On Nolan yesterday to talk about the most recent response from Stormont Executive on the development of Covid disease. Through various discussions it affected me how human understanding fails to keep pace with the current situation.
One woman said she was so tired of looking at people wearing masks that she preferred to stay home instead of going out. It so happened that her husband died during a traumatic period and is still suffering from loss and isolation.
The specific stress that people suffer as a result of isolation is considered necessary to reduce the risk of the disease poses real challenges. Storey’s funeral was cut short with the loss of many lives and death.
The fact that so many people have been vaccinated makes its complication difficult, but if you do not look for many problems in the system. It is worth reading Maire Louise Connolly reports from Ulster Hospital:
Nurses move around, arrange blankets and pull curtains to protect patients’ dignity. In all cases, there is a patient who is waiting to be seen or received in the room. At its peak, 134 people were expecting – in a department that originally had 65 cubicles.
Now, these are not patients with covid, as Marie Louise points out in this section. We have a third risk of overdose, but it is not about Covid. Chris Giles and Sarah Neville in FT explain (Tony H / T):
The new phase of overcrowding has led to the fact that since the summer many people have lost their lives due to the NHS crisis or lack of awareness of serious illness, even if statistical interpretations are challenged.
Data from the Office for National Statistics, National Records Scotland and the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency have shown three stages of the epidemic.
As they can see, non-Covid deaths “since early July have been higher than the average weekly for five years leading to the epidemic”. What is happening now is the closure of the suspended cases.
Some of them are fatal, some covid, or other respiratory ailments that have been released since we stopped wearing the mask thinking we were safe.
Obeying friends who work in health facilities who are less anxious than Northern Ireland, many (though not all) patients in the ICU are not vaccinated.
“Freedom Day” did not help. Also, politicians do not ignore the fact that many laws are broken. Modern literature is limited in that it allows for the imagination and freedom of every individual.
But if we just ignore them (and I am guilty of this too), our freedom will be curtailed. If you really want to avoid further financial ruin, at least you can wear a fecking mask!
However, long-term shortages have already occurred in COVID. Miracles have been used by medical personnel not only in the face of life-threatening illnesses, but in conjunction with contractors to transport oxygen supplies where they are needed, often not where they were intended.
In my family I had the experience of an old aunt who fell and broke her thighs. He spent three or four days being sent between Downe Hospital in Downpatrick and Ulster to undergo surgery that took all that time to prepare.
As was the case with a young relative, the nurse who supervises such patients in the health care system in the south of England, was alarmed to see a delay that would not have been allowed under a procedure that insisted on surgery within 24 hours.
I must say, there is nothing wrong with the staff. But if your wealth is too short there is nothing at the end of it that can really do. Years of procrastination and reports from Bengoa and Donaldson are collecting dust on the shelves.
In the big case, as our Gerry Lynch noted on Twitter, the main Covid support we have (vaccines) works:
In the UK –
This time last year: 20k cases / day, 17k patients in hospital, 1.5k in ICU, closed country.
Currently: 40k cases / day, 8k hospital & 900 in ICU (all falls), England fully open, Sco / Wal / NI near. And 3rd jabs are still coming out.
Yes, the vaccine works.
– Gerry Lynch (@gerrylynch) November 23, 2021
What we are struggling with is the legacy of negligence and political fear when we meet and explain to voters why the system is not working the way we need to. Wearing a mask will help in the short term, money will help in the short term.
But we also need our politicians to take on the problem faced by these experts and experts whose reports are often circulated as promissory notes, to stand up and explain the big picture and why tough decisions need to be made.
Restoring a Matron to hospital care can also help. It is a result that we should monitor and budget.
Mick is the founding editor of Slugger. He has authored papers on how the internet affects politics and the media and is a regular guest and speaker of events in Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty
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