The BMA recently reported on the continued disruptive impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on NHS care. They concluded that ‚’data indicates that the shutdown of most non-COVID-19 services in the first wave, combined with drastic changes in patient behaviour, mean the NHS is now facing a large backlog of non-COVID-19 care, storing up greater problems for the future‚’. Between April and November 2020 there were an estimated 2.57 million less elective procedures and 18 million less outpatient attendances. It will take years to clear a back log of this magnitude.
Also due to Covid-19, large scale temporary Nightingale Hospitals have been built at 7 locations in England, 2 in Wales and 1 in Scotland. It therefore creates the opportunity for these temporary hospitals to be utilised to help clear the backlog of NHS care cases post-pandemic.
This is a challenge that comes hand in hand with an opportunity.