Britain’s health minister said that he would like to wave a magic want to get huge quantities of personal protective equipment for health workers fighting the novel coronavirus outbreak but that there was a global deficit.
Matt Hancock defended plans for NHS staff to reuse personal protective equipment (PPE) because he doesn’t have a magic wand to make it fall from the sky and a leaked Public Health England (PHE) document, published, revealed it was being regarded as the last option.
Downing Street verified it was being examined, but would only be permitted if it was safe and Matt Hancock announced to the Commons Health Committee it was a clinical decision.
And he told the committee that in some instances, the reuse of PPE is recommended by clinicians, so the point was that it had to be a clinical decision and he said that given we have a global situation in which there’s more limited PPE in the world than the world needs, clearly it’s going to be a tremendous pressure point.
He further added that there was nothing that he could say that would take away the reality that we have a global challenge and they’re doing everything that they can to resolve that challenge to get PPE to the front line.
The Health Secretary indicated he would look at the guidance around PPE for those working in care homes but Committee chairman Jeremy Hunt questioned why the Government guidance doesn’t require PPE to be worn in care homes for non-COVID patients and if it was suggested that risk is being taken with residents in care homes.
Matt Hancock replied that he didn’t believe they were taking a risk in that way with residents in care homes but that he was extremely happy to look at that particular point in the guidance.
But in the end, what it’s going to boil down to is that medical workers are going to have no alternative but to recycle their PPE or simply not wear any at all because the Tories have starved the NHS and Public Services for 10 years, and by their admission, the Tories must acknowledge, without giving us the line ‘It wasn’t me’.
Having to re-use PPE in hospitals or care homes is the equivalent of re-using toilet paper and re-use effectively indicates there’s no PPE worn by the staff a second time around.
And now it appears that we have to be Houdini to recover from 10 years of Austerity, and instead of using this magic wand, Matt Hancock could have phoned the EU to accept their proposal of bulk buying PPE.
But it seems that Boris and Co chose not to accept their offer in case they upset the Brexiteers. They’ve clearly made some poor choices and they’ve let us down with the cupboard being bare even before the lockdown, due to Tory decisions on Austerity.
PPE isn’t a rare commodity, it’s made of simple materials and its deficit is solely due to no strategy, inadequate planning and poor organisational skills by this Tory government.
Matt Hancock might not have a magic wand, but he did tell us at the start of this virus that there would be plenty of everything, so more lies by the Tories.
No magic wand, well perhaps the Tories should be shaking that magic money tree. You know, the one they used to influence the DUP with £1.5 billion to keep them in power, or the one they use when buying missiles to bomb other countries, or even still, perhaps they should be emptying those offshore bank accounts they have.
And since when has this pretentious little man been paid to cast spells – magic wand my heinie. He’s paid to ensure that front-line health workers have all the protection they need and if he can’t do his job properly, then he should move along so someone more qualified can do it.
The United Kingdom is a highly developed and industrialised country and it shouldn’t be incapable of mass producing and distributing protective gowns at short notice but instead, some nurses were having to use black bin liners as an apron.