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British nurses are preparing to escalate the conflict with the government by involving emergency department, intensive care unit and cancer ward staff in the next industrial action.
It is understood that the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) is considering working overnight over three days.
Unions are preparing to intensify the conflict by ending the process by which the RCN agreed to local immunity from strike action with hospitals.
This process, which includes around 5,000 exemptions or waivers at the local level, was decided through a joint committee of NHS and RCN staff.
The RCN told NHS leaders on Friday it was preparing to call on members working in emergency departments, intensive care units and oncology to join the strike.
However, unions will make limited provisions for the most urgent clinical situations as part of their legal obligation not to endanger their lives.
An RCN source said:
“They expected escalation but weren’t prepared for the removal of the commission and disenfranchisement process that too many people manipulated at the local level and pressured nurses to stop the strike. bottom.”
The date for the next strike by UK nurses is expected to be announced in the coming days, and action is expected to be taken in the coming weeks.
RCN nurses took part in a two-day strike on Monday and Tuesday in England, but the strike in Wales was canceled following an offer of improved salaries from the government in Cardiff.
Trade union leaders have pleaded with Health Secretary Steve Barclay to act to prevent further strike action in England, but the government led by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak remains one of the main points of contention in 2022. /23 showed no concessions to payment.
Ministers said they were looking forward to paying salaries next year, but said unions needed to address current wage rates given the sharp rise in the cost of living as a result of rapid inflation.
RCN general secretary Pat Cullen sent a letter to Mr Sunak requesting a meeting directly, but a week later the prime minister did not respond and there was no contact with the Ministry of Health and Human Services.
Press association additional coverage