NO CONFIDENCE IN MELDRUM! – London BMA demands huge campaign to smash Health Bill

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March on the 63rd anniversary of the NHS, was supported by BMA members who fought for their union’s policy that the Health Bill be immediately withdrawn
March on the 63rd anniversary of the NHS, was supported by BMA members who fought for their union’s policy that the Health Bill be immediately withdrawn

BMA chairman Dr Hamish Meldrum has been rocked by a ‘no confidence’ vote at last week’s meeting of the London Region of the BMA.

At the meeting, his refusal to fight for the BMA policy that the Health and Social Care Bill be withdrawn led to demands for his resignation.

Around 100 members attended the London Regional Council Meeting on Wednesday and carried a motion stating that:

‘The BMA leadership has been mandated by the SRM in March and the ARM in June to call for withdrawal of the Health and Social Care Bill.

‘Council took this forward on 20th July, with a vote to start a public campaign for withdrawal of the Bill.

‘This London Assembly meeting therefore;

‘(i) mandates the BMA leadership to mount a huge public campaign for withdrawal of the Bill

‘(ii) votes a motion of censure of the Chairman of Council for not promoting our views for withdrawal of the Bill.’

There were only ten votes against.

Three other resolutions were carried opposing the bill and demanding its withdrawal.

Doctors at the meeting pointed to the way that Meldrum ‘undermined’ calls for the bill to be scrapped by co-signing a letter to the Times which called for ‘further significant amendments’ to the bill rather than its withdrawal.

Meldrum is preparing to lobby the House of Lords in support of this amendment policy but has been shaken by what is the first motion of censure ever carried against a BMA chair at a London BMA meeting.

Dr James Johnson, was forced to resign in 2007 after members accused him of failing to represent their views over the MTAS scandal.