U.K. Junior Doctors to Strike Next Week After Talks Break Down

Junior doctors at state-run National Health Service hospitals in England will strike over pay and conditions next week after talks with the U.K. government broke down.

The doctors -- medical-school graduates who are training to be consultants or family practitioners -- will provide emergency care only for 24 hours starting at 8 a.m. on Jan. 12 and stage a similar 48-hour protest two weeks later, their labor union, the British Medical Association, said in a statement on its website Monday. A full-scale nine-hour strike is scheduled for Feb. 10.

The junior doctors first voted in November to strike over government plans to impose a new contract that will change the way they’re paid, reducing compensation for weekend work. They then called off action planned for November to allow for further negotiations with the government.

“Those talks ended on Monday, Jan. 4, and, regrettably, without the significant progress we were seeking,” the BMA said in its statement. “As a result, junior doctors in England will be taking industrial action for the first time in 40 years.”

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