The coronavirus cases are rapidly increasing in the UK because of a new variant of the virus.
Healthcare providers in the country will be reopening seven emergency field hospitals as the intensive care units are flooded with a large number of patients.
According to the National Health Service (NHS), the directors of the field hospitals were requested to resume services on December 23rd. These field hospitals were set up to cater to the first wave of the coronavirus, however, they were shut down after the first wave dissipated.
The President of the Royal College of Physicians Andrew Goddard reported that many hospitals in London are mostly occupied by coronavirus patients.
As reported by the government’s dashboard, the UK has set a new record with the number of daily cases skyrocketing to more than 57,000. The death toll has also seen an increase of 445 per day.
Goddard continued to explain that the new variant spreads at a faster rate and the cases in the South East, South Wales, Essex, and London have been rising at a dramatic pace, thus creating the need of re-opening of the field hospitals.
The field hospitals are named NHS Nightingale as a tribute to Florence Nightingale. In the Docklands area in London, the ExCel center was modified to set up a field hospital to accommodate at least 500 beds along with oxygen and ventilators. However, earlier at the beginning of the pandemic, only about a few dozen people were admitted to the field hospital.
There are concerns about how the health care personnel will be arranged for these field hospitals, considering usual hospitals are already understaffed.
The peak of the coronavirus patients in hospitals in England was reported in April at 19,000 patients. As of now, a new record has been set with hospitalizations increased to more than 22,000 as reported by the government’s healthcare data.
As the healthcare providers are under severe strain because of the rapidly increasing hospitalizations, doctors have been pleading with people to remain in lockdown and follow the SOPs provided by the government.
COVID ICU again today. Almost all my patients are less than 60 years old and previously fit. Some are very young. If you think this disease can't touch you then think again. 💙
— Rupert Pearse (@rupert_pearse) January 2, 2021
An intensive care doctor from the Royal London Hospital posted on Twitter recently, sharing his experience at the coronavirus ICU. He stated that most of his patients were under the age of 60 and formerly in good health. He proceeds to warn young people that if they have the misconception that the virus won’t be as harsh for them, they are wrong.