‘Radical’ BMA blasted amid threat of NHS GP strikes: ‘Healthcare has become industrialised!’

‘Radical’ BMA blasted amid threat of NHS GP strikes: ‘Healthcare has become industrialised!’

WATCH NOW: Roy Lilley blasts BMA after warning of more strikes

GB News
Georgia Pearce

By Georgia Pearce

Published: 03/04/2024

- 15:55

The British Medical Association say healthcare professionals are 'tired of being bullied and gaslit'

Health Writer Roy Lilley has warned that the British Medical Association (BMA) is becoming "more radical" and "more aggressive", as the trade union has hinted at more strikes.

The BMA has said that NHS GPs are "ready to strike" because healthcare professionals are "tired of being bullied and gaslit".

This comes as a new survey of family doctors revealed 72 per cent said they were "willing to strike over pay, funding and workload".

Reacting to the data, Health expert Roy Lilley said the GP sector of the healthcare industry is a "complicated situation", and their "fundamental argument" is the fact that in the last ten years, one in five GP practices have closed across the country.

Junior Doctors and Roy Lilley

Roy Lilley says the BMA has become 'more radical' and 'more aggressive'

PA / GB News

Speaking to GB News, Lilley argued that the sector has seen a lack of funding compared to other healthcare providers, claiming they are "under pressure" due to the government "making some ring fence money available for other health professionals, but not GPs".

Lilley highlighted that GP practices are "small businesses" and are "not funded by the NHS".

Speaking to hosts Tom Harwood and Emily Carver, Lilley explained: "These are people who contract for services, so they're running their businesses. They've been hit by inflation. A lot of them are working at the margins.

"And whilst this money is available to get other allied health professionals working with them, the money's not available. They can't use it to hire GPs."

Lilley also claimed that GPs have resorted to "working as Uber drivers" as they are "unable to get a job as a GP".

In criticism of the union, the BMA, Lilley responded to their warning of GP strikes and said they have "an appetite for more strikes".

Lilley told GB News: "The BMA used to be a kind of cosy gentleman's club really, and everything was done very discreetly. But there's been a big change in the leadership of the BMA. Now the BMA is run by much younger doctors.

"They dominate the council of the BMA, and they're much more radical. In my day, no one would ever have thought a doctor would have gone on strike. But now we've had endless strikes, and no settlement is in sight."

Lilley argued that in recent years, the "whole tone and texture of the BMA has changed" and the union is "much more militant and aggressive".

Roy Lilley

Roy Lilley says the GP industry has 'lost its personal touch'

GB News

In response to Lilley, host Emily admitted she "can't get her head around" why GPs would want to strike, arguing that they "mostly seem to work part time" and "get paid considerable salaries".

Emily asked Lilley: "I can't understand why on earth any GP would even think about taking away their work and going on strike?"

Lilley responded: "I think the GPs occupy a very important and privileged place in our society. I hark back to the days when we had family practice, where you knew who your doctor would be and you could go and talk with them, you had a relationship.

"In family doctoring these days, you have trouble ringing up and getting an appointment, and you're very likely to get an appointment with a Zumba class more than you are likely to see a GP. Things have changed.

"The whole process has changed and it's become much more industrialised and we've lost the personal touch, I think, which is a shame."

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