It’s becoming increasingly clear that our ‘local‘ NHS hospital Trust (London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust – LNWH) wants to anonymise its four hospitals and treat them as one ‘virtual’ hospital. In his latest progress report the LNWH Interim Chief Executive never mentioned the name of Ealing Hospital once. The major facility closures and movement of facilities out of Ealing Hospital in response to Covid-19 are allegedly not going to be reversed. Staff morale at the hospital appears to be low. I’ve heard this from multiple sources.
In September 2019 the North West London Collaboration of CCGs stated that there were 441,683 patients registered at Ealing’s 75 GP surgeries. The scale of residential development in Ealing since 2010 and in the planning pipeline is enormous. ‘Ealing Matters’ – the network of 60+ residents’ and community groups – began researching these developments in 2019. The current total of these actual and planned developments is now over 40,000 new homes, which would house over 80.000 new resident over the next 10 years. I can personally vouch for the authenticity of this as I began this research in 2019. By 2030 we could easily have over 500,000 patients registered at GP surgeries in Ealing. The sheer volume of demand surely demands the development and maintenance of a Major Hospital in the town. One would have to be somewhat deranged not to endorse this sentiment.
Only Belgium and Spain Have More Covid-19 Deaths/Million Than the UK
(Worldometer – 29 May 2020)
Government’s Test/Trace/Isolate Went Live on 28 May 2020
Well….sort of. ’The Guardian’ of 29 May 2020 quotes Test/Trace/Isolate supremo Baroness Dido Harding saying that 10,000 transactions will be the going rate ….in four weeks time. Press stories are legion about minimal training of tracers and patchy hook ups between Call Centre staff and Local Authorities (LAs). Not a peep out of my LA about its involvement. Stories are developing that the supporting IT falling over. As for the NHSX Smartphone App – it’s still apparently on holiday on the Isle of Wight…
LAs are claiming they were only informed of their role in the project on 22 May 2020. They also claim that money to pay for activities was only due to arrive today (1 June 2020). LAs point out that they lack the statutory powers to deal locally with new Covid-19 outbreaks, and they have real concerns that those traced and told to self-isolate may lack the financial ability to do so.
And it’s Public Health Professor Allyson Pollock who, as ever, hits the nail on the head about all this:
‘R values depend upon the data and timeliness. We should be looking at community prevalence’.
There is a Government test/trace/isolate web site:
However this site tells us nothing about the time path linking Covid-19 symptoms, testing, test result availability, contact by tracer, tracer contacting Covid-19 ‘suspects’ and subsequent isolation/quarantine of the suspects.
There is an interesting web site tracking Covid-19 R values across the country:
At £50 Million/Month Covid-19 Tracing Had Better Work
25,000 Call Centre staff on an average salary of £10/hour, £1,500/month plus Serco’s/Sitel’s 20% gives us cost of £45 million for June 2020 alone. Add on 3,000 clinical support staff on around the same rate and we get this monthly cost up to £50.4 million. Goodness knows what Deloitte is getting paid for testing. And the cost of developing the NHSX Covid-19 Smartphone Tracing App? Who knows?
Private Companies Known to Be Involved
Serco, G4S, Mitie, Sodexo, Randox, Amazon, Palantir, Faculty, Google, Microsoft and Sitel
Non-Existent Emergency Dentistry for Many
The British Dental Association claims the DHSC has done a poor job in providing emergency dental care during the Civid-19 lockdown. After the lockdown began on 23 March 2020 it took two to three weeks to set up 550 NHS Dental Care Centres. Anecdotal evidence reveals patients in agony failing to get information or replies to messages left – never mind treatment. PPE for emergency dentists has been either in short supply or no supply. ‘The Observer’ on 31 May 2020 describes the horror of patients filling cavities themselves at home. Even when some dental practices will be allowed to open on 8 June 2020, many are unlikely to have adequate PPE to provide safe, sustainable services.
UK ‘Excess Deaths’ Totals Expose Massive Failings in Public Health Contingency Planning and Covid-19 Response Implementation
The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has reported 53,960 ‘Excess Deaths’ in the UK from the start of the outbreak to 23 May 2020. Excess Deaths are typically defined as the difference between observed numbers of deaths and expected numbers. ‘The Guardian’ reported this on 27 May 2020.
A recognised expert on Excess Deaths is Dr Rodney Jones. One of his information sources is Euromomo, the recognised mortality data source across Europe. It calculates a ‘Z-score’ which is the standard deviation away from the expected average. England has the highest Z score of any country at 44. Spain is 35, Belgium 30 and Netherlands 24.
Dr Rodney Jones’ analysis:
NHS NWL Bodies Exclude Real Time Public Involvement in Their Governing Body/Board Meetings
The LNWH Board meeting held on 27 May 2020 excluded any real time involvement of any of the 712,288 patients registered at Ealing and Harrow GP surgeries. This Trust runs Ealing and Northwick Park Hospitals. The public submitted questions but as of 1 June 2020 no answers have been forthcoming. It seems Covid-19 now allows NHS institutions’ management to carry on with no real time involvement of the public. Ealing CCG has not even scheduled any Governing Body meetings whether virtual/public excluded or otherwise. It no longer answers FOI questions itself – the NHS NWL Collaboration of 8 CCGs answers on its behalf. One does wonder whether the other 134 CCGs remaining nationally are behaving in a similar way.
Currently non-statutory NHS bodies in north west London either never meet in public or are slow to organise virtual meetings. The never-meet-in-public ones include Primary Care Networks (PCNs) and Integrated Care Systems (ICSs). The non-statutory NHS NWL Collaboration of CCGs does have web site presence, but no details are given about any future management meeting virtual/in public or whatever. What it does say is that it spends some £4 billion/year.
Does any of this matter? National Government is actually meeting now and you can watch proceedings on TV. Local Authorities are mastering the intricacies of using Microsoft MS Teams and running meetings being viewed by, and in some cases, involving the public. Local residents’ groups are now meeting using Zoom – so why can’t NHS institutions get their ‘transparency’ acts together?
Ealing Council Cancels Health and Social Care Meetings
Covid-19 is allowing some Local Authorities to duck out of statutory requirements to hold meetings. Ealing Council’s Health & Adult Social Services Committee meeting scheduled for 23 June 2020 is cancelled. The status of the Health and Adult Social Services Committee scheduled for 22 July 2020 is unknown. You might have thought that with massive Covid-19 restructuring at Ealing Hospital, 381 Covid-19 Ealing deaths (92 in care/nursing homes), testing/tracing/isolation up and running in Ealing, that some emergency public virtual meetings might have suggested themselves.