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September 28, 2023

Advice for accessing care at Bolton NHS Foundation Trust during October industrial action

  • Junior doctors and consultants will strike from 7am Monday 2 October to 7am Thursday 5 October
  • Several services set to be affected, but well-tested plans in place
  • Contact Bolton’s midwifery teams if concerned about changes to baby movements

Tried and tested plans are in place as Bolton NHS Foundation Trust prepares an unprecedented wave of industrial action during the first week of October.

Junior doctors and consultants will both begin their strikes from 7am on Monday 2 October until 7am on Thursday 5 October, which will have a significant impact on a number of services.

As we enter another round of action, Bolton midwives are issuing important advice about accessing support if noticing a change to baby movements.

Most women usually begin to feel their baby move between 16 and 24 weeks, and a reduction in a baby’s movements can be an important warning sign that a baby is unwell

Lianne Robinson, Deputy Chief Nurse at Bolton NHS Foundation Trust, said:

Unfortunately some mums-to-be have been reluctant to reach out for help during industrial action.

“It’s really important that if women notice a change in their baby’s movements they get in touch with their midwife immediately so that we can offer the care they need, and hopefully ease any stress and anxiety.

“During strike action we prioritise delivering our maternity services so that our midwives can continue to provide their expertise and high-quality care, just as they do any other day of the year.

Choose the right services to help the NHS

As with previous strike action, people in Bolton are being asked to choose the right healthcare service for them as the NHS in Bolton expects to be extra busy.

Urgent and emergency services will still be available to help those who need it as normal.

Staff at the Trust will contact people if their operations and appointments need to be rescheduled, whilst the NHS focuses on delivering urgent care.

Rae Wheatcroft, Chief Operating Officer at Bolton NHS Foundation Trust, said:

We’re doing everything we can to minimise disruption during industrial action by using our well-tested plans to keep urgent services running with Christmas Day cover.

“If your appointment needs to be rescheduled a member of the team will be in touch to let you know. If you haven’t been contacted, then please continue to attend your appointment as normal.

“During this busy period please remember to support your local NHS by choosing the most appropriate service for your health needs.

“Our Emergency Department is here in life and limb-threatening emergencies, but if your condition is non-urgent consider visiting your GP, pharmacist or using NHS 111 online for advice on the best place to find help.

“We would like to thank everyone for their continued patience and support.

If a relative or friend is due to be discharged from hospital and needs to be collected, people can help by bringing them home as early as possible as this will free-up beds for someone waiting to be admitted.

Finding support online

NHS 111 is available 24/7 for people to contact either by phone or online.

The Be The Difference Bolton website has information to help you choose the right NHS service for your health need.

The While You Wait website also has lots of helpful information on staying well whilst you wait for treatment.

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