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Labour calls for Lancashire private healthcare beds to be given to NHS during Coronavirus crisis

Posted on - 16th March, 2020 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Health, Politics, Preston News
County Hall Pic: Benjamin Wareing
County Hall Pic: Benjamin Wareing

The Lancashire Labour Group is calling on the Government to increase its response to the Coronavirus crisis, including requisitioning all private healthcare beds in the county.

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Cllr John Fillis, Lancashire Labour Health and Wellbeing, said: “We need a rapid expansion of our health services.

“The quickest and most practical way to do this is by the Government requisitioning all private healthcare beds and medical facilities. The Government has the powers to do this but they lack the will.

“The staff, facilities and equipment are already at a professional standard that would just require a public focus.

“There will also be a growing backlog of non-urgent conditions becoming urgent, which are not Coronavirus related. The private facilities could be used to deal with these cases reducing the possible cross infection of the virus to vulnerable people undergoing urgent treatment.

Lancashire County Council plays a major role in supporting elderly and disabled people in the community, keeping them out of hospitals.

“We have fantastic teams of directly employed and contracted staff who show true dedication to the people they care for.

“However, in Lancashire we do not have the capacity or trained support staff to carry out the latest advice that everyone over 70 should self-isolate for up to four months in their own homes. Without the right support in place it is a stupid idea.”

Hospital patient Pic: Parentingupstream from Pixabay
Pic: Parentingupstream from Pixabay

The Group will be putting the following motion to the next full council meeting:

“Lancashire County Council calls upon the Government to requisition all private health care beds and medical facilities in Lancashire to increase the capacity of our National Health Service in dealing with the Coronavirus for the good of Lancashire People.

“That the Chief Executive writes to the Secretary of State for Health expressing this proposal to be taken under emergency powers.”

According to the Labour Group, a lack of decision making is causing panic buying and the spread of anxiety and fear within local communities. They say local people are being left to “decide what is best for themselves and not the greater good”.

Read more: Prestfest postponed due to Coronavirus fears

Do you think private healthcare beds should be requisitioned? Let us know in the comments.

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