'Potential agreement' reached in bid to avert strike by junior doctors


A "potential agreement" has been reached between the British Medical Association (BMA) and the Government which could lead to strike action being suspended, the Health Secretary has said.

Jeremy Hunt told MPs in the Commons there had been a "time-limited" agreement made this afternoon for further talks, where the BMA would suspend strike action if the Government agrees not to impose a new contract on doctors.

He said this was now sitting with members of the BMA's junior doctors' committee to see whether they could support it.

But he said strikes across England planned for tomorrow at 8am are still due to go ahead.

He said: "I'm pleased to report to the House after working through the weekend, discussions led to a potential agreement early this afternoon between the BMA leadership and the Government.

"This agreement would allow a time-limited period during which negotiations can take place and during which the BMA agrees to suspend strike action and the Government agrees not to proceed unilaterally with implementing a new contract.

"This agreement is now sitting with the BMA junior doctors executive committee who will decide later today if they're able to support it."