BMA agrees junior doctor contract deal as emergency talks end

BMA leaders have agreed terms of a new junior doctor contract in a deal struck during emergency talks with NHS Employers through the conciliation service Acas.

Junior doctors will be consulted by the BMA in a referendum in late June or early July this year, and the deal remains subject to their agreement. But an Acas statement said that 'both parties have resolved the outstanding issues taken forward from previous discussions'.

A full contract agreed between the BMA and the government will be published at the end of this month.

The Acas statement said: 'Acas confirms the agreement between the BMA, NHS Employers and the secretary of state for health of negotiated terms which, subject to a referendum of relevant BMA members, form the basis for a new contract in 2016.

Junior doctor contract

'Over the last 10 days both parties have resolved the outstanding issues taken forward from previous discussions, finalised and confirmed areas already agreed, and developed further measures which address the wider concerns of junior doctors.'

The deal struck between the BMA and NHS Employers sets out agreements on training, whilstleblowing, recruitment and retention premia, pay for extra hours, and an agreement on Saturday pay - a significant factor that had prevented a negotiated settlement in earlier talks.

Under terms set out in the original proposals put forward by the government, core working hours were to be extended to include 7-10pm on weekdays and 7am to 7pm on Saturdays.

Saturday pay

In what looks like a significant change in position for BMA junior doctors committee negotiators, the deal now agreed with the government includes a framework to ensure that the more Saturdays a doctor works, the more bonus pay they receive.

At the bottom of the scale, junior doctors working less than one weekend in eight will receive no premium pay, while at the top juniors working every other weekend will receive 10% above basic pay, in addition to on call payments.

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