JUNIOR DOCTORS have defended their protected pay banding after a year-long struggle.
The BMA supported 15 foundation doctors at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Trust after employers tried to cut their banding – protected for four years under the terms of the 2016 contract – from 1A to 1B.
They went through a series of informal and formal grievance procedures to resist the move which would have unfairly reflected their working arrangements and cut £2,286 a year from their pay. Now the trust has written to the doctors, who were foundation year 1s in general surgery at the time of the attempted downgrade, to tell them they will be paid as 1A for their work.
Ciaran Scott, one of the affected doctors who is now an FY2 at the trust, said there had been ‘many hurdles’ to overcome. It was with the help of both colleagues and our local IRO (industrial relations officer) that we have managed to keep going and not give up even after being rejected so many times,’ he said.
‘It is with that determination that we managed to bring to the end a long and drawn-out process and come to a good conclusion that benefits the most junior members of the medical workforce.’
Another affected doctor and FY2 at the trust, Alex Mitchell, described the outcome as great news.
‘A massive thank you to the IRO Ousseynou Ly from the BMA for taking our case and putting in an incredible amount of time and effort to get this result as well as to Ciaran who has worked really hard to keep pushing the case forward.’
BMA eastern region IRO Mr Ly said the junior doctors had shown ‘steadfastness in never giving up the hope that the hospital would do the right thing in the end’. He added: ‘Although faced with blanket “no’s” at the beginning we turned them into significant “yes’s” for junior doctors. It goes to prove you should never give up.’