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Possibly stupid question but if we are around the top of the peak now why are the extra field hospitals still being built?

(27 Posts)
Greyrosewall Sun 19-Apr-20 09:00:57

Just that really. From the news I’m gathering that we are approaching the peak now and critical care beds are not being breached (in my area anyway - South Wales) yet another news article was just saying they are continuing to develop and build this network of field hospitals along the M4 corridor. Surely these will not be required? Whilst I’m comforted by the fact that every person will get a bed if needed where is the balance between providing and wasting huge amounts of money on facilities that will never be required?
Don’t the government departments speak to one another to carefully manage the numbers?

OP’s posts: |
ChippyMinton Sun 19-Apr-20 09:03:34

Because there is a time lag from peak infection to it developing into illness in individuals, and it can take week s to recovers.

See also funerals - that peak will be several weeks down the line sadly.

Soontobe60 Sun 19-Apr-20 09:05:14

I believe it's the peak of people having the virus. Lots of people end up in hospital a couple of weeks after becoming infected then end up in ICU several days after that. So the peak of infection isn't the same as the peak of ICU use.

Waxonwaxoff0 Sun 19-Apr-20 09:05:17

There may be a worse second wave in the autumn and winter. It's worth preparing for that.

LIZS Sun 19-Apr-20 09:05:50

The peak may yet spike if/when restrictions relax and having specific covid sites may enable regular activity at hospitals to resume.

Thisisitisit Sun 19-Apr-20 09:06:02

Probably part of a longer term plan. As this isn't going anywhere for a long time but things will have to return to a semblance of a new normal at some point, perhaps they will deal exclusively with new covid patients whilst other hospitals can restart seeing other patients? Just an idea, obviously not fact.

lubeybooby Sun 19-Apr-20 09:06:39

I think the plan is to in future have all covid patients go to a nightingale hospital instead of a regular one, and there's going to be a lot of patients still until the vaccine is found, tested and ready... 2 years ish probably. So the extra space will be needed.

NeverTwerkNaked Sun 19-Apr-20 09:08:04

It is going to be a long peak and then as lockdown relaxes there are likely to be further high waves of infection. This is a long way from being over sadly.

Floatyboat Sun 19-Apr-20 09:08:39

I guess so they can get going again with the more routine stuff.

CKoRn Sun 19-Apr-20 09:08:50

Pandemics come in multiple peaks, this is just the beginning - I'm sure the government have reiterated this point multiple times?

Babdoc Sun 19-Apr-20 09:09:02

It’s estimated that only 10% of the UK population have so far been infected, OP. So when we lift the lockdown, the second wave of infection could be much larger. There may be repeated locks/lifts to try and restrict the rush of cases needing hospital at the same time, but the extra capacity of field hospitals is a vital safety net.

Bagelsandbrie Sun 19-Apr-20 09:09:32

I don’t believe we are at the peak. I think lockdown will be released and then there will be a huge surge in infections and deaths. I think they just kept everyone at home in order to build the hospitals and prepare for it.

PleasantVille Sun 19-Apr-20 09:15:41

Isn't it as part of a strategy to be prepared for the future. There can be weeks between a person being infected and needing to be in ITU and no one knows what's going to happen in the coming months. Would you rather they didn't over-prepare?

sofato5miles Sun 19-Apr-20 09:19:19

Because this ain't going anywhere. The lockdown has only bought time. 80% of the population needs to get it for there to be any herd immunity and the antibody studirs, don't even look that that may actually be the case anyway

memememe Sun 19-Apr-20 09:37:12

i agree with bagels, i think they were unprepared for this, so shut everyone away to give them time to make space in hospitals, make new ones etc then theyll let us out and bam!

Imboredinthehouse Sun 19-Apr-20 09:42:31

Surely these will not be required?
Better to have them and not need them than not have the facilities and desperately need them.
Our NHS trust is gearing up for peak around mid May btw.

Greyrosewall Sun 19-Apr-20 09:44:21


Oh good god I’d not even considered this scenario. I didn’t think it would go away of course but did think that they’d started to at least get somewhere near the herd immunity, that enough people had caught it by now. I’d read an article that said they’d tested a cohort of people and something like 80% had antibodies and that they were hoping that most people had already been infected and just didn’t know.

OP’s posts: |
SquashedFlyBiscuit Sun 19-Apr-20 09:45:11

Building new morgues everywhere too....

They know more than we're wanting to believe.

Im so terrifird of them opening schools.

DeathByBoredom Sun 19-Apr-20 09:47:30

Good question, I doubt people are ready for the answer though.

aladyofinderterminateage Sun 19-Apr-20 09:50:06

I do think that as soon as possible we should be diverting all covid cases away from hospitals.
My friend's son is very unwell with post operative pneumonia. She delayed taking him to A&E because she was so frightened. He really should have been reviewed by the hospital where his surgery was done, but nobody there is picking up the phone or returning messages. Even the A&E department she went to locally couldn't contact his surgical team at the major London teaching hospital.
There must be so many people dying because everything not dealing with Covid is closed.

ChippyMinton Sun 19-Apr-20 09:51:16

The temporary mortuaries create storage capacity so that the funeral directors and crematoria can continue to provide dignified funerals.

aladyofinderterminateage Sun 19-Apr-20 09:51:27

I meant diverted away from regular hospitals to the new covid hospitals.

ypestis Sun 19-Apr-20 09:55:04

What Bagels said. This is basically a fake peak because we are not behaving as we normally would. Probably only a few million have already had the virus so any lifting of measures will Probably result in an increase of cases. The new hospitals are there ready now for when the lockdown lifts.

Pipandmum Sun 19-Apr-20 09:56:47

Also they need the beds in regular hospitals for other things that have been delayed, if there's staff to do them. People can catch coronavirus at the hospital and to have these patients in dedicated hospitals mean regular hospitals are safe for patients receiving other treatment. I'm not sure if that's the intention (to try and have coronavirus patients all in these new hospitals, not just as overflow) but it makes sense to me.

EricaNernie Sun 19-Apr-20 09:58:23

They are trying to plan any peaks around nhs capacity.

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