It is obvious after watching Question Time last night that Andy Burnham, the new Health Secretary, is a complete light-weight. Clearly, he has been promoted above his capabilities. As an example, watch this exchange.
Two papers (there may be others) lead this morning on the swine flu epidemic. From The Times:
As the number of people falling ill in London and the West Midlands nears epidemic levels, officials believe that some measures to distribute drugs and relieve pressure on hospitals and GPs are “a complete waste of time”.
Correspondence between senior personnel seen by The Times raises concerns about the NHS’s readiness to deal with the hundreds of thousands of cases expected in the coming months.
From the Mail:
Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson said yesterday that 14 had died so far of what was believed to be swine flu.
Sir Liam said there were 335 people in hospital in England with swine flu of whom 43 are in critical care.
Lab tests showed that yesterday there were 9,718 confirmed cases in the UK. This was just behind Mexico, with 10,262 cases. The U.S. is in the lead with 33,902 confirmed cases.
However, Sir Liam admitted it was unknown how many in the UK were suffering from the virus as many would be treating themselves at home rather than contacting their GP.
We have much more than a ‘little local difficulty’ on our hands here and the Government may well be hit with a full blown crisis over the Summer. Once Our Dear Leader has finished telling us all what a success the G8 has been and that he ‘saved the world’ yet again, he needs to spend time getting to grips with this crisis. Young Mr Burnham is not going to cope on his own, that is for sure.