§ Mr. Terry Davis
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is his latest estimate of the number of junior hospital doctors working a one-in-three rota.
§ Mrs. Virginia Bottomley
Recent reports from health authorities indicate that at September 1989 some 5,103 junior doctors (around 22 per cent. of the total) were on rotas of one in three with prospective cover or worse. That number is planned to fall to 4,230 by September 1990, of which some 2,942 (around one in eight) are on rotas which are also considered locally to be onerous. "Prospective cover" means contractual cover for the annual and sick leave of colleagues.