The hostile environment is inconsistent with government commitments on child health and the fight against COVID-19

Charging those with uncertain immigration status for NHS services was introduced as part of Theresa May’s ‘hostile environment’. Non-payment of bills can result in being reported to the Home Office and used as a reason for not being granted settled status. This system remains in place during the Covid-19 pandemic, actively discouraging health care seeking … Continue reading The hostile environment is inconsistent with government commitments on child health and the fight against COVID-19

Schools must not reopen without clear evidence and widespread agreement that this is safe

As a paediatrician, I share the grave concerns of nurse Ian Wilson who has two children at school in Lewisham and experience of working with covid-19 infected patients. In an open letter to Health Secretary Matt Hancock last week, he pleaded that we were not enrolled against our will in a giant experiment that could … Continue reading Schools must not reopen without clear evidence and widespread agreement that this is safe

Statement on key worker testing and contact tracing

Since the start of the lockdown we have called for contact tracing and widespread testing as the only means to establish the true prevalence of COVID-19. This is what the World Health Organisation urged all countries to do from the very beginning.  We welcome Matt Hancock’s announcement of testing for symptomatic key workers and their … Continue reading Statement on key worker testing and contact tracing

The government can’t hide behind grateful applause: they must now fund the NHS properly

SIGN OUR PETITION NOW The solidarity expressed through weekly applause for the NHS, carers and key workers has been truly inspiring, and a great source of support for all staff.  But we need those in power to do more than just clap for us. The NHS and local authorities have been starved of resources for … Continue reading The government can’t hide behind grateful applause: they must now fund the NHS properly

For-profit companies have no place administering retirees return to the NHS

We deplore the involvement of Capita in the administration of retired doctors’ return to the NHS workforce. Reported delays of over two weeks to inclusion back on the performers’ list, while NHS 111 remains overwhelmed, are unacceptable. Valuable, willing expertise is being underused at a time of national crisis. Inexperienced call handlers are being recruited … Continue reading For-profit companies have no place administering retirees return to the NHS

There is no exit from the COVID-19 lockdown without population testing

It is not possible to undertake any meaningful planning for an exit strategy from the current lockdown without an understanding of COVID-19’s prevalence and our current levels of immunity. On April 2nd Health Secretary Matt Hancock promised to test 100,000 people daily by the end of the month. On that same day the UK was testing ten times … Continue reading There is no exit from the COVID-19 lockdown without population testing

The epidemiology of COVID-19: count, divide, compare, discuss differences

The basic principles of epidemiology are summarised by CDCD: count, divide, compare, then discuss differences. Unfortunately discussion of COVID-19 has widely ignored this approach. First, we must count something. Examples of things you might count include deaths, cases of disease, uses of a health service, occurrence of a symptom, or the presence of a risk … Continue reading The epidemiology of COVID-19: count, divide, compare, discuss differences

Doctors in Unite statement on retired health workers returning to work during the coronavirus pandemic

The UK government has asked the General Medical Council to contact doctors who have retired within the last six years and grant them temporary registration, a licence to practice and return to the GP performers list or secondary care equivalent.  Without consulting the individuals concerned the GMC passed their details to local health services. Tens … Continue reading Doctors in Unite statement on retired health workers returning to work during the coronavirus pandemic