Health authorities in the UK have warned that people may be letting cancer and other serious conditions go untreated, because they’re scared of catching the coronavirus if they go to hospital.
Many beds at Warrington Hospital were empty on Friday, April 25 and in some cases entire wards were completely deserted.
Public Health England said visits to hospital emergency departments had fallen by almost 50 per cent in April compared with the same month last year.
The charity Cancer Research UK estimated that 2,250 new cases of cancer could be going undetected each week, partly because people are reluctant to go to hospitals for fear of catching the coronavirus or overburdening the system.
Dr Anna Vondy, consultant in emergency medicine says she is concerned that people are staying away from coming to hospital because they are concerned about catching COVID or being a burden on the NHS.
“I don’t believe that heart attacks have suddenly stopped happening. I don’t believe that people aren’t having strokes”.
The NHS has encouraged people to continue to seek urgent help if needed and attend cancer screening and maternity appointments.