Save lives - Resume other healthcare and end the lockdown

I'm a doctor in the NHS, and I'm afraid I hang my head in shame when the weekly neighbourhood pot-banging session goes off. It's frankly embarrassing to hear how we are supposedly struggling to cope with a 'tsunami' of Covid patients.

Here's how it is: The hospitals have been near empty for the last 2 months, A&E attendances down 50-80%, hardly any patients, and staff across the nation are forced to entertain themselves by doing Tiktok dances. It's a farce. In Scotland we never approached capacity even at the peak. The temporary hospital in Glasgow was never used.

Meanwhile, a growing backlog of investigations, treatments and follow up are on hold, people are dying (demonstrated by the hundreds of excess non-covid deaths each week) or becoming more unwell with other conditions, time critical interventions are missed, and people are not attending A&E when they should due to a dangerous message that they must avoid 'burdening' the NHS.

Remember there's many other illnesses to die from, and most of these are actually treatable or manageable long term.

This simplistic mantra of 'staying home saving lives' is insulting. It would only have indirectly saved lives if the healthcare system was at risk of being overwhelmed, and it has not come anywhere close. Unreliable London-centric data modelling has been far too heavily relied upon. All we're doing is causing harm and deaths from other conditions. Don't other deaths matter anymore, or is it only Covid ones we're interested in now?

The Imperial college paper is flawed in multiple areas but most fundamentally they provided (grossly pessimistic) figures for deaths from Covid but completely fail to quantify the short and longterm deaths caused by lockdown. They assumed no deaths whatsoever would be caused by lockdown, stopping other healthcare, causing economic ruin, unemployment, poverty, and mental health crisis!! It is only one half of a comparison. Sadly these deaths and health implications will be a lot higher, worse, and longlasting than the virus.

Healthcare for other conditions needs to resume, there is massive unused capacity in the NHS.
Protect the vulnerable, let the rest live their lives. The virus isn't going away.
Please stop the impending healthcare crisis already caused by lockdown from getting any worse.

Why the contribution is important

Deaths and harm caused by stopping other healthcare and the consequences of lockdown will outweigh those caused by Covid.

by Deedee3 on May 11, 2020 at 12:40AM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.2
Based on: 7 votes


  • Posted by AlJones May 11, 2020 at 09:04

    Fully support this. The principle is ‘first do no harm’. The response to Covid-19 has ignored that.

    If this happened a year ago today I’d be living with an aggressive cancer and no knowledge of it. It was only found because I qualified for preventative treatment. It was one of a handful that don’t show on any of the scans.
  • Posted by Haggis59 May 11, 2020 at 09:32

    Lockdown has to stay in place currently in Scotland. The virus is still highly active in Scotland and people are still dying. There would have been more deaths if lockdown hadn't been in place and the NHS would have been overwhelmed and you wouldn't be saying how quiet your hospital was, trying to deal with routine appointments and Covid 19 at the same time. If they eased lockdown in Scotland just now the R figure would rise and there could be a second wave of the virus and lockdown would be longer and more lives lost. We cannot risk that happening.
    I don't think people will go to hospital for routine appointments and check-ups just now as week before lockdown my husband had annual appointment with his consultant and the hospital he attended was extremely quiet. People are frightened of catching the virus and places like hospitals and GP practices are no-go areas to a lot of people just now for obvious reasons, especially if they have underlying health conditions like my husband has. I understand what you are saying about other health conditions but the Scottish Government have been advising Scottish people on national TV that if they are unwell to contact GP as NHS still open for other illnesses. My husband's health professionals have been phoning him regularly to ensure he is well and coping with his condition. He is not on shielding list by the way. I know of other people in my area getting regular phone calls from GP/other health professionals they are involved with such as physiotherapists, specialist nurses etc. and if people are struggling with their condition they would advise them what to do such as attend GP/hospital etc.
    We have to listen to Scottish Government advice in as they are following scientific advice and facts and statistics on deaths in Scotland that are very real. Where I stay we have highest rate of deaths than anywhere else in Scotland due to COVID 19 and people are socially distancing, staying at home etc. It's not same picture here as at your hospital. People can have COVID and not have apparent symptoms initially as you know so social distancing and lockdown is still vital in Scotland. Scottish Government are also taking heed to what has happened in other countries. UK have HIGHEST rate of COVID 19 deaths in Europe. You are basing your opinion on what is happening in your hospital and not on the whole of Scotland and what is happening in other countries. We all want life to go back to some normality as soon as possible but the virus has to be less active in Scotland than it is currently. We all have to be patient a bit longer.
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