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acnmac

Urgent advise please re. joining BMA

10 posts in this topic

Hi,

I am an IMG myself and have been following recent developments, but  

strangely I am now considering becoming a BMA member and would appreciate your thoughts on it.

So far I have refrained from becoming a BMA member because I was unsure if it's really value for money.However, recently I 've had difficulty in getting my trust to give me my maternity benefits as per trust policy which I feel I am entitled to.I have already written to HR officer dealing with this but have not yet got a satisfactory reply.

Looks like I'd need the advise and support of an organisation like the BMA .I can't really think about any other organisation that can help.However with all this recent negative publicity about the BMA I am again wondering if paying their fees will really benefit me.

Could any of you advise me as to what you think BMA can do in my situation especially with regard to:

1.Would they give me clear and impartial adsvise.

2.If HR still refuses would the BMA take up my case with HR on my behalf.

Any personal experience in similar situations would also be helpful

Thanks

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i dont know exactly how good the services of BMA are..

but just to warn u, they clearly state in their web that they dont deal with issues that arose prior to u joining them..

i am afraid, i dont think they will be of much help in ur case..

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Dear ACNMAC,

My personal opinion is it is always good to be a member of BMA. Regarding the new developments: I do not think the date of joining is very important as this is a general issue. In fact for general issues affecting many doctors you can approach the BMA even without becoming a member. If you would like to generate some pressure from BMA then you should become a member and attend the local meetings as well. I have never attended one though. That was because of my personal circumstances and time pressure.

dadu

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Give them a call and ask them how they will help you if you were to become a member. My personal experience is that they generally very strongly fight for your case if they feel you are on the right, if not they give you clear and succint advise. They do take legal action (and pay for it) on your behalf, and on most usual issues trusts generally do not mess with the BMA and issues are solved out of court.

Cheers

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Hi,

Thanks for the advise, it's really helpful.I'll probably  contact the BMA and see what their opinion is ,

acnmac

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Hi,

Just contacted BMA-their policy is that they are 'not obliged to help with anything that pre-dates membership'.

acnmac

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hi these are a few things you can do yourself:

1. Ask your medicals staffing to send you the 'trust grievance policy'.

2. Start proceedings in the above's terms, which would usually mean writing a letter to a named person on the policy, be claer to send a copy of your contract and policy guidelines about how your issue should have been dealt.

3. All trusts are required to give you an answer in writing addressing the issues in your grievance, once you have that in writing there are two possibilities- the grievance could have been addressed in your favour, which means they agree with your complaint and will solve it, or that they do not agree, BUT will have to give their reasons in writing. This is a legal document so they would need to have a strong 'catch' in their favour if they do refuse your claim.

4. Also, at any stage in the above, drop in the words 'I am also planning to discuss this with the BMA' which sometimes on its own works!

5. Also by the way, if your maternity leave issue is not in the past, BMA would still be obliged to work for you (means if you still havent gone on leave)

Good luck

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Hi,

Thanks Bludanubein.

The only problem is that my contract says that in case of any grievance my first point of contact would be the consultant and then the HR officer.

I 've been dealing with the HR officer so far and because of this contractual agreement doubt if I can take it up with the director of HR who is overall in charge of the policy.

I have a good mind not to pursue it any further because it seems too much of a hassle plus I'm not sure I 'll go back to work in this trust because I may have to re-locate due to family commitents.

If this happens they may well demand that I pay all the money back even though their policy states I need to go back to work for  3 months post maternity leave to' a NHS Trust' (which I definitely plan to do but possibly in a different trust). They could be equally difficult at the time about this even though this is what their Trust policy clearly states.

Right now I've asked to be on a career break instead but am still considering various options.

I think the key here may have been BMA membership but unfortunately when I contacted the BMA they clearly said they are not obliged to help in issues which arose before the membership started, which would be the case with me.

Thanks again for your suggestions.

acnmac

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Hi,

After all this I am now begining to feel that perhaps it may be a good idea to be a BMA member mainly in a sticky job related situations like this where the trust is being difficult about their own policy.

I suppose at the end of the day, being a BMA member is not exactly cheap so it would depend on a balance between the financial situation and the need, especially if there are grey areas which could be a problem.

Recent bad publicity about the BMA re. new regulations is the other side of the coin that probably needs to be considered.

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Hi there

certainly join the BMA and ask them to help. the retrospective claim disclaimer thingy is there realy to encorage people to view the BMA more as an insurance policy that you always keep in check. Also when u speak with askBMA you get trained call attendants working on a hyperthetical. You pay for membership by monthly DD - so u can just cancel if ur not getting what you want. Sounds like u need to speak with ur trusts EA (employment advisor) anyway.

It sounds that your HR person just needs a stiff letter from the union to encorage them to provide you what is rightfully urs (as such). However you may be getting ur wires crossed, so do check the T&Cs carefully. Once you join they will be delighted to do this for you. as another has said, it being a maternity issue suggests that it is an ongoing issue.

As a by - the Juniors conference in May (5th +6th), has its first day devoted to the issue 'what has the BMA ever done for me'. Its free to attend (ur expenses will be reimbursed) - might be worth the trip down/up to london.

good luck

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