From Devon County Council:

The NHS in Devon is giving advice to residents and visitor as the county’s hospitals and NHS services prepare for the first strike by consultants in a decade.

Consultant doctors and hospital-based dentists started taking industrial action from 8am today (Thursday 20 July) until 8am on Saturday 22 July.

In contrast to strike action among other staff groups, no other clinicians can provide cover for consultants, so any planned care delivered by junior doctors or other healthcare professionals that requires even remote consultant supervision will need to be rescheduled. This means a significant amount of planned care involving junior doctors will be affected.

Consultants will provide ‘Christmas Day cover’, meaning they will continue to provide all emergency services but routine services will be impacted.

The NHS says is prioritising resources to protect emergency and urgent care, critical care, neonatal care, maternity, and trauma.

Their advice for local people and holiday makers is that people should use 999 in life-threatening emergencies and NHS 111 online for other health concerns. GP services and pharmacies are also available for patients and can be accessed in the normal way.

If you haven’t been contacted or informed that your planned appointment has
been postponed, please attend as normal.