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Medics quit pension talks

DOCTORS and nurses in Scotland have walked out on talks with the Scottish Government over pension reforms declaring the negotiations pointless.

The collapse of discussions, which have caused anger among the medical profession, mark a low point in the relationship between the NHS workforce and Scottish policy-makers.

Early in the talks about the reforms, which are being imposed by Westminster, there was hope the Scottish Government would use the powers available to them to soften increases in employee pension contributions.

At that time then health secretary Nicola Sturgeon talked about the "unique" partnership that existed connecting unions, employers and the devolved government.

However, BMA Scotland, which represents doctors, has since complained the SNP talked up its opposition to the reforms while doing nothing. It balloted hospital clinicians about taking strike action which would have reduced services to that of a typical bank holiday – only calling off the stoppages because the majority in favour was considered too slim to make the protest effective.

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