Doctors slam junior contract for discrimination against women

BMJ 2016; 353 doi: (Published 04 April 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;353:i1915
  1. Abi Rimmer
  1. BMJ Careers
  1. arimmer{at}

Doctors have expressed outrage after the government’s own analysis of the new junior doctor contract found that it discriminated against women.

After a breakdown of negotiations with the BMA the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, announced in February that the government would impose a new contract on junior doctors in England from August this year.1

On Thursday 31 March, NHS Employers published the new contract for junior doctors in England.2 At the same time, the Department of Health published an equality analysis of the draft contract.3

The equality analysis said that, “while there are features of the new contract that impact disproportionately on women, of which some we expect to be advantageous and others disadvantageous, we do not consider that this would amount to indirect discrimination as the impacts can be comfortably justified.”

Responding to this statement Jane …

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