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UK health system under more pressure than peak of pandemic, warns official

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LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM: People march to 10 Downing Street after they gathered outside the University College London hospital in order to support the strikes launched by healthcare professionals demanding a reasonable wage increase in the face of rising inflation and high cost of living in UK, on December 20, 2022 in London, United Kingdom. (Raşid Necati Aslım - Anadolu Agency)
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Jan 03, 2023 - 02:19 AM

LONDON (AA) – The UK’s health system is under more pressure than it was during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, an official said on Monday.

Medical staff are “pressurized like never before,” Tim Cooksley, head of the Society for Acute Medicine, told British broadcaster Sky News, stressing that politicians must listen to workers of the National Health Service (NHS).

He said there is a need to “think carefully” about how to manage the crisis and called for “some urgent actions.”

“There has never been a greater recognition amongst all staff that our current situation is worse than it has ever been,” he said.

Matthew Taylor, head of the NHS Confederation, also pointed out that health services are under “unbearable strain.”

“That does mean that we’re not able to provide service as usual,” he told Sky News.

The UK’s Liberal Democrats party said Parliament “must be recalled” as “the NHS crisis is a life or death situation for huge numbers of patients.”

“The NHS is collapsing in front of our eyes whilst the PM & Health Sec are nowhere to be seen. Parliament must be recalled & a national major incident declared to put the NHS back on a pandemic-style footing,” Daisy Cooper, deputy leader of the party, said on Twitter.

Health services in the UK have been facing growing difficulties due to ongoing strikes by healthcare workers and an alarming spike in flu cases.

Officials of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) earlier told the BBC that an estimated 300 to 500 people more people are dying each week due to delays in emergency care.

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