Doctors accused the government of “willful neglect” for refusing to immediately implement its coronavirus “plan B” for the winter.
The British Medical Association has warned that Covid-19 deaths are as high as during the March lockdown, with Chaand Nagpaul, the body’s chairman, calling the ministers’ approach “incredibly worrying.”
His comments followed a press briefing by Sajid Javid in which the Health Secretary claimed the pressure on the NHS was not yet unsustainable and said ‘Plan B’ would only be activated when hospitals risked to be overwhelmed.
The independent has previously reported how some patients wait two full days for a bed after visiting A&E, while others are forced to wait outside the hospital in an ambulance for hours.
However, Mr Javid warned on Wednesday evening that winter restrictions could return “if we don’t do our part”.
The health secretary told reporters: “If not enough people get this reminder, if not enough people eligible for this initial vaccine offer don’t show up, if people aren’t wearing masks when they are. should really… that’s okay to hit us.