Dr Dan Poulter, Member of Parliament for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich has called for European Union-imposed working time restrictions to be lifted on doctors’ working hours to protect patient care, allow junior doctors enough time to train, and to save money in the NHS.
In a well-attended debate in Parliament, Dr Poulter, who is a trained NHS hospital doctor, spoke about the damaging impact of the directive on the continuity of patient care and the high costs to NHS hospital of employing locum doctors, who are needed to cover gaps in NHS shift rotas as a result of the shortfall in the number of hours contracted doctors can now work.
The European Working Time Directive (EWTD) is part of the EU health and safety legislation which lays down requirements in relation to working hours, arrangements for night workers, rest periods and annual leave. Since August 2009, all NHS doctors and nurses have been required not to work over 48 hours a week unless they opt-out of the these restrictions voluntarily.
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Written Answers — Department of Health and Social Care: Addictions: Health Services (19 Jul 2019)
Daniel Poulter: To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 8 July 2019 to Question 270772 on Addiction Services, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the number of medically-staffed inpatient detoxification beds in England; and if he will make a statement.
Drug Treatment Services (16 Jul 2019)
Daniel Poulter: I congratulate the hon. Member for Manchester, Withington (Jeff Smith) on securing the debate. I agree with everything he said. I draw the attention of Members to my declaration of interest as a practising NHS psychiatrist and as someone who has worked in drug addiction, or drug treatment, services. I do not intend to rehearse the discussion on the lack of, or reduction in, funding for the...