Covid: Number of people hospitalised with virus soars as nurse strikes continue

Covid: Number of people hospitalised with virus soars as nurse strikes continue

The number of people in hospital with Covid-19 in England has risen 22 percent in a week.

There were 6,720 people hospitalized with the virus on December 14, up from 5,501 on December 7according to data published by NHS England.

The number of mechanical ventilation beds occupied by confirmed Covid patients increased from 129 to 150 during the same period.

The scale of the increase varies by region. The number of beds occupied by Covid patients in the Southwest increased from 466 to 726, an increase of 56 percent.

NHS Covid doctor Dr Daniel Goyal said the rise in hospitalizations is “very worrying” and warned that rising cases are exacerbating the “worst healthcare crisis any of us have ever experienced”.

“Part of the biggest concern is the number of patients contracting covid in hospital settings,” said Dr. Goyal. The independent.

“What we are seeing is that people who pick up Covid at the hospital are then delayed in coming home, which adds more pressure to the service.

“It brings up the question of why we haven’t done anything meaningful to try to reduce transmission.”

Dr Goyal said that in the run up to Christmas there should be stronger public health messages about the benefits of wearing a good face mask in public spaces and crowded spaces.

He added that the public should consider wearing face masks at holiday gatherings where vulnerable family members are present.

Covid-19 hospitalizations are also increasing along with flu transmission, resulting in flu admissions to hospitals in England exceeding those for people with covid-19 for the first time since the pandemic began , as the figures show.

Covid cases have been on a rise through December

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Covid cases have been on the rise until December

(Getty/The Independent)

The flu admission rate stood at 6.8 per 100,000 people in the week to December 11, compared with 6.6 per 100,000 for Covid-19.

Both levels are currently rising, but the rate of flu admissions has risen sharply week over week, nearly doubling from 3.9 per 100,000, while Covid-19 admissions are rising more slowly.

The figures are the latest sign that the flu is becoming more and more prevalent among the population.

Hospital admissions of people with flu are now at a higher rate than at any week in the previous four winters, according to data from the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA).

Admissions are highest among those 85 and older, at 23.1 per 100,000 people, a weekly increase from 10.7.

There has been an equally large jump in the rate among children four and under, from 8.4 to 20.7.

All two and three year olds are eligible for a nasal spray flu vaccine, offered by local GPs.

But only 37.4 percent of two-year-olds have received the vaccine so far, along with 39.5 percent of three-year-olds, well below the acceptance achieved to this point in previous winters. .

Professor Majeed Azeem, head of public health at Imperial College, said the UK currently faces a dual threat of covid and flu, encouraging the public to get vaccinated against both viruses.

He added that while people are unlikely to scale back their holiday plans amid rising hospital admissions, people should consider getting tested before visiting elderly relatives for holiday gatherings.

It comes as nurses in England, Wales and Northern Ireland today launched a back-to-back strike over pay after talks with the government broke down.

Members of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) on the picket line outside the Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool

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Members of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) on the picket outside Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool


The UK’s four chief nurses and the head of NHS cancer care have urged the nursing union to do more to “prevent harm to patients” and “alleviate unnecessary distress” for dying patients on strike days.

Sir Keir Starmer has urged Rishi Sunak to negotiate with nurses over pay, as he has called the impending strike a “badge of shame” for his government.

The Labor leader accused the prime minister of going into “hibernation” instead of working to get the first nationwide nurses’ strike on Thursday called off.

There were no talks between health secretary Steven Barclay and the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) scheduled after they fell apart on Monday.

Other NHS data from England reveals that the number of people receiving treatment primarily for Covid in acute trusts rose by 17 per cent between December 6 and 13, from 5,096 to 5,982.

The data is in line with figures from the Office for National Statistics suggesting that covid infection levels are rising again in England, with 1.73 per cent, or 1 in 60, of people in the community estimated to be have the virus in the week ending November 26. compared to 1.60 percent the previous week.

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