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'This is life or death for the NHS' - top consultant on what this week's major strikes mean

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For the first time in NHS history, hospital consultants and junior doctors are walking out on the same day this week - expected to bring some parts of the health service to a standstill.

Across the north west, hospital consultants will strike from 7am today (Tuesday 19 September) to 7am on 21 September. Junior doctors will then join the consultants on strike from 7am on Wednesday 20 September to 7am on 23 September, bringing almost all routine care to a grinding halt for 24 hours of joint industrial action, the NHS has warned.

On Wednesday 20 September 2023 from 7am, both junior doctors and consultants will deliver ‘Christmas day levels of staffing’ only.

That means only emergency care will be provided, with very limited elective activity - including planned operations like joint replacements, issues causing serious blood loss - reserved for those in most urgent need will take place on days of industrial action. READ MORE: The illness that put 10,000 children in hospital last winter - and how to avoid it READ MORE: One in five patients wait more than 12 hours in one Greater Manchester A&E The junior doctor title applies to all grades in the hospital below a consultant.

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