I have received a lot of emails about the new Government guidance on COVID19 and the lockdown. I know how concerned Putney constituents are about the lockdown and I thank everyone who has got in touch with me about the new Government guidance. The full guidance is here.
I have read your concerns carefully and asked many questions of local and national healthcare leaders. It is vitally important to make the right decisions and I know that there a very big impact of this lockdown.
I voted to support the guidance because of the increasing number of people being hospitalised because of COVID, and the increasing number of people over 60 who are catching it. On August 25th, there were only 9 total COVID related admissions to and diagnoses in hospital. On October 25th, there were 118. This represents a 1,211% increase in just two months. If we don’t stop this now, we’ll have a far worse lockdown in future weeks which would have led to more deaths and have an even worse impact on jobs and businesses.
Please do join my Coronavirus Mutual Support Facebook page to share needs you have or ways in which we can help each other. More helpline numbers are on my website here.
We must learn from the last lockdown and I am calling for more sector specific business support, better mental health services and financial support for the many people who have been unfairly left out of the job support schemes.
It is vitally important that the failing track and trace system is fixed. A main reason for the need for this lockdown is the failure of track and trace. If we had a better locally managed system in place that the SERCO system, we would know a lot more about where the virus has been transmitted and how to isolate cases, track back their contacts very clearly, and then stop the spread of the virus this way. This has happened very successfully in countries like South Korea and New Zealand. The Government’s system is not yet working even after all these months. In Wandsworth we don’t have a permanent testing centre yet, and only 59% of positive cases are tracked. This is why we still need to have blanket measures in place.
I will keep pushing for the ‘world beating’ track and trace system that we have promised but yet to see.
I am very concerned that our NHS healthcare continues to function alongside this crisis and I am in touch with local NHS leaders about this as I am worried about GPs being less accessible, about health visitors, dentists, cancer diagnosis and treatment and so much more. Please let me know your experiences so that I can take these up with the Health Minister. I will continue to campaign for healthcare services at Queen Mary’s Hospital especially.