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Patients and hospital staff share photos of NHS at work on Christmas Day by Idowu Olabode : December 25, 2016, 09:33:58 PM
People are thanking NHS staff working over Christmas, as medical professionals and patients share pictures from hospitals staying open throughout the day.

Some people have used the #MerryXmasNHS and #NHSworkingXmas hashtags to call out Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, who praised NHS workers in his Christmas message but has been repeatedly condemned by them this year.

There will be 1,800 babies delivered across the UK on Christmas Day alone, with an NHS maternity ward team in Leeds sharing a picture of newborn baby Jimmy.

That means 12,000 midwives will be clocking in for Christmas shifts, as will 97,000 nurses and 200,000 workers in care homes. A total of 40,000 cleaners and 12,000 porters will also be on duty.

Grateful parents also shared footage of their children in care units.

Naomi Patterson uploaded a video of her son in a Dorset hospital, writing: "Thanks to the excellent staff all year round, I get to spend another Christmas with my little man... thank you to all at the Kingfisher Ward... from George, Merry Christmas."

Other teams of doctors and nurses working with children shared photos of themselves dressed in reindeer horns and Santa costumes as they made their rounds. Paediatric nurse Fern, 27, wrote: "I'm off to work, thinking of all those missing their families today to help others."

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has argued that junior doctors should regularly work all-day shifts across Saturday and Sunday without extra pay, claiming more people die on the weekends owing to staff shortages.

It later emerged his department had allegedly 'airbrushed' information contradicting that claim, with the medical union BMA condemning the heath secretary for trying to force harsher regimes on overworked NHS staff without increasing funding.

In his Christmas message he thanked NHS staff for "pulling out all the stops", but replies were not sympathetic.

A junior doctor working in oncology wrote: "Dear Jeremy. Today is Sunday. Today is Christmas Day. The shops are all closed... But my colleagues and I in the NHS are still here at work. Because it IS a 24/7 NHS."

Hundreds of people also shared a meme listing the NHS Emergency Department opening times as 00.00 to 23.59 on every day over the festive period, and asked if Mr Hunt would be working such long hours.

Writing for The Independent, gynaecological doctor Reena Aggarwal said: "I have been qualified for nine years and in all that time I have only ever had one Christmas Day or night off.

"Labour ward is a 24/7 service so Christmas Day is like any other day except we might wear a Santa hat."

Source : UK Independent

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