Coronavirus: British doctors ‘deeply worried’ as hospitals fill up and number of cases breaks records

British doctors are currently facing enormous pressure from the new variant of the coronavirus, as it threatens a worse situation than the summit last April.

There are currently more people in hospital with COVID-19 than in the spring – and infections continue to rise. As of Monday, 20,426 people were being treated for the disease in hospitals across England, up from 18,974 in mid-April.

Monday also saw a record 41,385 cases in a single day, only to be broken on Tuesday when 53,135 new cases were reported. On Wednesday, South East Essex County had declared a “major incident” due to health services struggling with demand.

According to UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock, the majority of new cases contributing to the latest wave are believed to be from the new highly transmissible variant.

He said local media: “The ‘remove virus’ bit has gotten a lot harder since the new variant really kicked off in December.

“Today the majority of new cases in the UK are the new variant. It is much, much easier to pass from one person to another. “

On Tuesday evening, a tweet from a Birmingham emergency doctor went viral after showing the scale of the second wave of hospital care.

Punith Kempegowda said he was quitting work after “another long day” in the accident and emergency department at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, when he took a photo of a waiting line. ambulance outside.

“Almost all of these ambulances wait with patients inside for more than 3 hours,” he wrote, adding, “Because there is no room in the hospital to bring them. “

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Meanwhile, Tom Dolphin, London-based anesthesiologist said he was “deeply concerned” for the coming month.

“Hospital after hospital activates contingency plans and redeploys staff or declares major incidents,” he wrote on Twitter. “We haven’t even gotten to the part where the infections related to Christmas gatherings appear in the hospital yet.

“It’s worse than March, maybe because we all saw it coming. I am deeply worried about January. It will be difficult to maintain a lot of elective work (it would be difficult in normal winter, let alone this year).

“The problem is staffing. Everyone is exhausted and demoralized. And yet the staff keep going because that’s what they do: cope. Or so we hope. “

Earlier this month, the new strain of the virus forced governments in all four of the UK’s countries to back down on plans to ease the rules over Christmas. Many countries in Europe have also closed their borders to anyone coming from Britain, fearing the variant could spread further.

Hopes, now, are on the rollout of vaccinations, with the UK launching the campaign in early December by endorsing the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine, and endorsing the AstraZeneca / Oxford jab on Wednesday.

The EU also started the vaccination rollout over the weekend, with countries now administering the Pfizer / BioNTech solution to their citizens.

New restrictions?

The government dashed many hopes for a normal Christmas the week before the holidays, introducing a whole new tier – tier 4 – with the tightest restrictions, before placing it on London and parts of the south east.

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On Boxing Day, large swathes of the UK were also subject to these restrictions – with more to come. Hancock is expected to announce further level changes later Wednesday. However, he confirmed to a radio station that no level would be introduced above level 4, but that areas in lower levels would be improved.

“I know people understand this, I know these decisions are not easy and have a big disruptive impact on people’s lives, but I know people understand why we have to do it, especially with the vaccine. around the corner, ”he told me.

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