Send us news by text, start your message Globe News and your send photos and videos to 80360
Wirral GPs in strike action today
WIRRAL GPs are taking part in the first doctors' strike in nearly 40 years today.
The action, which involves members of the British Medical Association (BMA), follows a dispute over pension contributions and a later retirement age.
In total 15 of the borough's practices are taking part while 45 have decided against it.
A spokesman for the BMA said: "NHS pensions are calculated in an entirely different way to defined contribution schemes which are now common in the private sector.
"To directly compare public sector schemes to what they would cost in a private sector scheme is fundamentally flawed.
"In the NHS Pension Scheme all contributions are, in effect, lent to the government at an agreed rate of interest rather than being invested in tradable assets as in private sector funds.
"This is economically efficient and is a helpful arrangement both for the government and for the scheme.
"We are not seeking a better deal or special treatment for doctors, but a fair deal.
"NHS staff agreed major changes to their pension scheme in 2008 to make it sustainable for the future.
"This involved a big hike in contributions, and the introduction of tiered contributions to protect lower paid workers.
"It also meant an increase in pension age for new entrants, and staff – not taxpayers – taking on sole responsibility for any further increases needed to cover increases in costs, such as those created by people living longer.
"Now the government wants to tear up that deal.
"Under its plans doctors could pay twice as much for their pensions as civil servants on the same pay that can't be fair."
Although striking GPs will not be carrying out routine appointments, surgeries will still be open for urgent care.
Doctor Phil Jennings, chairman of the Wirral clinical commissioning group, said: "The BMA has said that doctors will attend their usual workplace on June 21 to carry out all urgent and emergency care.
"However, the union has said that as part of the day of action it will postpone non-urgent care.
"For example, the BMA has said it will postpone any consultations or procedures than can be safely delayed.
"Wirral CCG, Wirral Community Trust and Wirral University Teaching Hospital are working together to minimise disruption to patients as much as possible and to provide information about where to access treatment if you are unable to see your doctor."