The Editors of the British Medical Journal (BMJ) and the Health Service Journal (HSJ) have told the Government that the “pandemic is far from over” and that an immediate return to restrictions including gathering limits, work from home, masks on public transport and free testing is needed to save the “dying” NHS. MailOnline has more.
Economically-crippling Covid restrictions need to be brought back immediately to save the “dying” NHS, ministers have been told.
No. 10 has batted away calls to bring back pandemic-era curbs in response to soaring infections, with up to one in 20 people now infected.
But in a scathing editorial demanding action today, the editors of the British Medical Journal (BMJ) and the Health Service Journal (HSJ) – two of the country’s leading health publications – accused Boris Johnson’s Government of “gaslighting the public” about Covid’s threat.
Dr. Kamran Abbasi (BMJ) and Alastair McLellan (HSJ) said: “Now is the time to face the fact that the nation’s attempt to ‘live with Covid’ is the straw that is breaking the NHS’s back. The heart of the problem is the failure to recognise that the pandemic is far from over and that a return to some of the measures taken in the past two years is needed.”
Examples of curbs needed included a return to wearing masks in healthcare settings and on public transport, the reintroduction of the £2 billion-a-month free testing scheme, [work from home] where possible and “restrictions on some types and sizes of gathering”.
They didn’t set out what gatherings should be curbed. But previous limits enforced in England saw just six people allowed to meet indoors, weddings limited to a handful of guests and festivals cancelled.
Despite alarm bells being raised about the current situation, other leading experts have insisted Downing Street’s decision to axe all of the final restrictions in April was correct. Virus-tracking surveillance data has even shown the latest resurgence has peaked, with pressure on NHS facilities also set to ease in the coming days.