UK in trouble: 73 NHS workers test positive for coronavirus as 318 self-isolate
London, April 2, 2020 (AltAfrica)-MORE than 70 NHS workers at a London hospital have tested positive for coronavirus.
Seventy-three workers at Great Ormond Street have been diagnosed with the bug with 318 off sick.
Ex-WHO director Anthony Costello tweeted that he had received an email informing him of the outbreak.
I received this circular to all staff from Great Ormond St hospital today. 73 out of 181 staff have tested positive and 318 staff members off sick. (THREAD 1) pic.twitter.com/YGHmAAOWxj— Anthony Costello (@globalhlthtwit) April 2, 2020
It comes after fears NHS workers were not given the proper PPE gear to keep them safe as they treated coronavirus patients.
The British Medical Association claims that thousands of GPs and hospital staff are still not being provided with the kit they need to protect themselves and those with Covid-19.
Health officials say they are “frustrated” by a lack of progress in expanding UK coronavirus testing.
Prof Paul Cosford of Public Health England (PHE) said “everybody involved” is unhappy testing has not “got to the position yet that we need to get to”.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson responded to criticism of the UK’s strategy by hailing screening as a solution to “unlock the puzzle” of coronavirus.
It came after the UK saw its biggest daily increase in deaths – 563.
As of 17:00 BST on Tuesday, the overall number of deaths from the virus in the UK was 2,352.
Mr Johnson, who is self-isolating in Downing Street after contracting the virus himself, has faced widespread criticism over his government’s testing strategy – with around 13,000 tests available each day against a target of 25,000.
Prof Cosford said testing would hit 15,000 per day “imminently” and that PHE had played its part in ensuring tests were “available to support clinical treatment of patients who need it”.
The government has confirmed that 2,000 NHS frontline staff out of half a million in England have been tested for coronavirus since the outbreak began.
Prof Cosford, PHE’s emeritus medical director, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme the figure was “nowhere near where we need to get to but it’s a good start”.
But Labour’s Shami Chakrabarti said the slow pace of testing showed “a lack of clarity of what the plan is and how it is going to be executed