Not enough doctors for 7-day NHS, says Royal College head

There are not enough doctors to run a seven-day NHS in England, according to a leading doctor. In a speech on Tuesday, Royal College of Physicians president Prof Jane Dacre will warn ministers the issue must be addressed if their policy is to work.

She will highlight research that shows vacant posts are not being filled and gaps in rotas are being seen. It comes as ministers are locked in a dispute with junior doctors over their plans for improving weekend care.

Last week thousands of medics went on strike over the government’s decision to impose a new contract on them, designed to make it cheaper to rota on staff at weekends. Prof Dacre will raise her own concerns at the RCP’s annual conference in Harrogate, saying NHS trusts are struggling to find enough staff to cope with existing demands.

Full story in BBC News 15 March 2016