CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

The government has let the NHS and the people down

26 March, 2020

• DEFEND the Whittington, and I expect all the Whittington community of staff and patients, are appalled that front-line National Health Service and care staff are working with coronavirus patients without adequate PPE personal protection equipment.

Many staff are also not being tested for coronavirus. This is incredibly risky for them, their families, and their patients.

It’s particularly appalling since the government was warned by Richard Horton, the editor of The Lancet medical journal, on advice from China, of the need for tests, PPE, and additional ventilators eight weeks ago.

Our organisation was formed 10 years ago when we successfully saved our A&E from closure. But since then many hospitals have been closed and bed numbers, including at the Whittington, have been reduced.

In 2010 we asked what are you going to do in the case of an exception mass emergency? The extra leeway that used to exist for emergencies was destroyed well before the current crisis.

This nasty, uncaring, government has systematically run down, cut, and privatised, our health service.

They confuse us with their lies and their dithering about provision and protection for staff and for us, their patients.

Our thoughts and thanks go to the heroic staff at the Whittington Hospital.

They have just been judged as outstanding for care and community care by the Care Quality Commission. But then we always knew they were super caring.

SHIRLEY FRANKLIN
VALERIE LIPMAN
& MARTIN FRANKLIN
from Defend Whittington Hospital Coalition

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