Dr Julian Lewis: May I reiterate my concern that there appears to have been no ballot of junior doctors specifically on the question of withdrawal of emergency care? Does the Secretary of State share my fear that if, despite his best efforts, people die as a result of this withdrawal of emergency cover, public demand for a legislative change to ensure that that can never happen again will become irresistible?

[The Secretary of State for Health (Mr Jeremy Hunt): My right hon. Friend is right to say that the public will be extremely disappointed that professionals are putting patients at risk in such a way, and it is extremely tragic that they are doing so. I am afraid that I think this is a crossing of the Rubicon – crossing a line in a way that has not happened before. I think it is totally tragic, and I support the concern of my right hon. Friend.]