Situation in ICUs 'incredibly scary' as capacity tested, consultant warns

23 January 2021, 13:51

By Seán Hickey

This ICU consultant tells LBC that conditions in hospitals across the UK are 'incredibly scary' as Covid-19 admissions stretch services.

Zudin Puthucheary is an Intensive Care Consultant at the Royal London hospital. He joined Matt Frei to break down the situation facing the UK's medical services amid lockdown.

Speaking on behalf of the Intensive Care Society, he told Matt "we are still in control but the atmosphere is frantic. The atmosphere is one of worry – continued worry."

He explained that because staff "don't know what's coming," they are suspended in a constant state of fear.

Mr Puthucheary explained that equipment and staff are constantly playing catch-up with ever increasing patients needing ICU treatment.

"The logistics of it are incredibly scary."

He said that the scale of the problem is cause for worry: "You go to the 130 hospitals across the UK and think 'gosh, this is like a warzone.'"

Read More: Covid-19 crisis in numbers: LBC brings you the stats you need to know

The consultant called for "military planning," to manage the continued strain, or else "we will have military level casualties."

Matt cited the "mental strain" that doctors and nurses are being put under as another aspect of the pandemic which will have a lasting effect.

"I'm not unusual in worrying where this is all going," Mr Puthucheary noted, warning that mental health issues "will be the single greatest issue at the end of lockdown."

He revealed a statistic that left Matt reeling: "Our nursing staff have the same rate of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as war veterans."

"This will be the break-up of the health of the nation."

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