Intended for healthcare professionals


Junior doctors lose legal challenge over contract imposition

BMJ 2016; 354 doi: (Published 28 September 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;354:i5300
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. The BMJ

The health secretary for England, Jeremy Hunt, has fought off a legal challenge by junior doctors who argued that he was acting unlawfully by forcing them to work under an unsafe new contract.

Justice for Health, a group of five junior doctors, argued at the High Court in London that Hunt was acting outside his legal powers when he made a statement to parliament in July 2016 announcing that he was imposing the contract after junior doctors in England voted against it.1

The group also contended that Hunt’s statements on the contract imposition were unclear, breaching his duty of transparency, and that he was acting irrationally in citing the proposed seven day NHS to justify the new contract.

But Mr Justice Green ruled in favour of the health secretary on all …

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