Thousands of junior doctors in England have started a 48-hour strike to protest against the terms of a new employment contract. This is the fourth time the doctors have gone on strike in the protracted dispute over weekend pay and Saturday work rules. The doctors object to the new contract imposed by the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, and the government, which is aimed at making the National Health Service (NHS) a full seven-day operation.

IBTimes UK looks at some of the best placards and banners seen outside hospitals around England during the strike.

junior doctors strike
An effigy of Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt hangs on the picket line during a junior doctors' strike at Glenfield Hospital in LeicesterDarren Staples/Reuters
junior doctors strike
NHS workers strike outside Wythenshawe Hospital in ManchesterChristopher Furlong/Getty Images
junior doctors strike
Protesters hold placards outside St Thomas' Hospital in LondonDan Kitwood/Getty Images
junior doctors strike
Junior doctors, staff members and supporters take part in a picket outside King's College Hospital in LondonCarl Court/Getty Images
junior doctors strike
A woman holds a placard outside St Thomas' Hospital in LondonStefan Wermuth/Reuters
junior doctors strike
A passing cyclist gives the thumbs-up as a junior doctor holds a placard outside St Thomas'Stefan Wermuth/Reuters
junior doctors strike
A protester displays a message outside St Thomas' Hospital, just across the river from the Houses of ParliamentStefan Wermuth/Reuters
junior doctors strike
A placard is placed in a hedge outside St Thomas' Hospital in LondonJustin Tallis/AFP
junior doctors strike
A banner is hung behind railings outside the Maudsley Hospital in LondonCarl Court/Getty Images
junior doctors strike
A woman holds a placard as junior doctors, staff members and supporters take part in a picket outside King's College Hospital in LondonCarl Court/Getty Images
junior doctors strike
Junior doctors protest outside St Thomas' Hospital in London, against proposed new conditions and pay rates for working unsociable hoursJustin Tallis/AFP
junior doctors strike
A demonstrator holds a placard as she protests outside St Thomas' Hospital in LondonJustin Tallis/AFP
junior doctors strike
Junior doctors and staff members take part in a strike outside St Thomas' Hospital, just across the Thames from the Houses of Parliament in LondonDan Kitwood/Getty Images
junior doctors strike
A woman poses for a photograph as she takes part in a demonstration outside the Department of Health in LondonCarl Court/Getty images
junior doctors strike
Junior doctors and protesters stage a die-in outside the Department of Health in LondonCarl Court/Getty images
junior doctors strike
People staging a die-in holds placards outside the Department of Health in LondonCarl Court/Getty images
junior doctors strike
A woman wears a mock surgical mask outside the Department of Health in LondonCarl Court/Getty images
junior doctors strike
People hold an effigy of Florence Nightingale outside the Department of Health in LondonCarl Court/Getty images
junior doctors strike
A woman holds a placard outside the Department of Health in LondonCarl Court/Getty images
junior doctors strike
A woman holds a placard reading 'Cuts kill' outside the Department of Health in LondonCarl Court/Getty images
junior doctors strike
Junior doctors and staff members take part in a strike outside St Thomas' Hospital in LondonDan Kitwood/Getty Images

During the strike the junior doctors are only providing emergency care. A strike called for later in April would also include emergency care. That would mark the first total shutdown by junior doctors since the NHS was founded in 1948.