Lynn hospital managers are preparing for more disruption after union leaders announced plans for two all out strikes by junior doctors next month.
Members of the British Medical Association (BMA) have signalled their intention to hold two nine-hour stoppages, in which no emergency cover will be provided, on April 26 and 27.
The walkouts, which are widely believed will be the first total withdrawals of labour in NHS history, are the latest escalation of the BMA’s contract dispute with the government.
They are also set to follow a 48 hour walkout, in which emergency cover will be provided, which is due to begin at 8am next Wednesday, April 6.
And officials at Lynn’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital say they are already discussing contingency plans for the strikes.
Deputy chief executive David Stonehouse said: “As always our primary commitment is to the welfare of patients and the priority during our contingency planning has been and will continue to be their safety and care.
“We are doing our best to make sure that, as far as possible, we operate as normally as we can for the announced forthcoming strikes. However, there will be a number of cancellations.
”As with previous strikes, we will contact any of our patients that are affected. If you have not heard from us, but have an appointment on a strike day, please attend as normal.”
Government health officials have branded the plan for total strikes as “desperate and irresponsible.”
But the BMA says emergency cover will be provided by other doctors and health staff and it is employers’ responsibility to maintain a serVice.