Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Uncategorized

Britain Doctors Are Begging the Government to Test Them for Coronavirus

Want the best of VICE News straight to your inbox? Sign up here.British doctors are begging the government to give them priority testing for COVID-19, saying that a lack of tests is leaving them, their families, and patients exposed to potential infection. Since last week, British health authorities have focused testing on people who are…

Britain Doctors Are Begging the Government to Test Them for Coronavirus

Want the best of VICE News straight to your inbox? Sign up here.

British doctors are begging the government to give them priority testing for COVID-19, saying that a lack of tests is leaving them, their families, and patients exposed to potential infection.

Since last week, British health authorities have focused testing on people who are admitted to hospitals with suspected symptoms, or in residential care settings like nursing homes where there was a suspected outbreak.

Doctors and other medical workers have complained that they’re not being tested themselves, even when they’re showing possible symptoms and despite being on the front lines of the outbreak. They fear they’re unwittingly exposing others to the virus.

The situation has prompted one junior doctor, Rebecca McCauley, to launch an online petition calling on the government to provide testing for front-line health workers. So far, it’s gotten more than 860,000 signatures.

In the petition, McCauley — who said she had a minor cough — described the dangerous dilemma faced by health workers when they developed possible COVID-19 symptoms.

“Do I stay off work for 7 days, leaving a shortfall of staff and putting further strain on the already strained [healthcare system],” she wrote. “Or do I go to work with my minor cough (as I would normally) and risk potentially spreading COVID-19 to all of the sicker patients I see on a daily basis?”

READ: How the CDC botches basic science in its attempt to make a coronavirus test

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

One doctor, a consultant cardiologist at a London hospital, told the Guardian he suspected he had COVID-19, but that in order to be tested he resorted to paying for his own test kit from a private U.K. clinic and had another sent to him by a colleague in China.

“The [government] policy is that I don’t need to be tested and even the people who have been in contact with me aren’t going to be tested,” said Mark Gallagher, calling the government stance “a policy of surrender.”

“They are abandoning the basic principles for dealing with an epidemic, which are to test whenever possible, trace contacts and contain,” he said. “Almost all individual physicians I know feel that what they are doing is wrong.”

Page 1 of 2
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Copyright © 2020 Tribune Media LLC