The public is being reminded to use 999 or A&E for life-threatening emergencies only as further industrial action impacts on NHS services taking place from 7am Monday 2 October until 7am Thursday 5 October.
Also included in this strike is a 24-hour strike by Society of Radiography (SoR) members, who will walk out from 7 am Tuesday 3 October until 7 am Wednesday 4 October.
Health leaders in the region continue to urge the public to only call 999 for an ambulance or attend A&E for life-threatening conditions or injuries only and that patients will experience disruption and long waits during the strike, and in the immediate days following the action when patient attendance often peaks.
Dr Neil O’Brien, executive medical director, North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board said: “NHS trusts across the region reported exceptionally high attendances of patients using urgent and emergency services during recent industrial action, with patients experiencing long delays in being seen as staff had to prioritise those most urgent.”
“Whilst the NHS across the region does its utmost to plan for these strikes, and we understand the impact of these on patients, families, and staff during that time, we also know there is a longer-term impact of appointments needing to be rearranged and what longer waiting times mean to people.”
Dr O’Brien added: “Teams are working hard to give people the care they need and really do need and appreciate the public’s help to take extra care and only call 999 for an ambulance or attend A&E for life-threatening conditions or injuries only.”
GP practices and local pharmacies will also be open as usual during the industrial action to help with advice and treatments.
Parents, carers, and young people can also use the Healthier Together website or app which provides NHS healthcare advice and top tips on a range of child-related illnesses along with information on local services.
Anyone needing urgent mental health support should continue to seek it via their local Crisis Team. People can also search by postcode to find their local crisis line.