If anybody needs to modify their tone, it is Health Secretary Matt Hancock.
He was challenged in the House of Commons to acknowledge that the government’s lack of testing for the coronavirus had led to unnecessary deaths – and he responded by saying the questioner should modify their tone.
That was a big mistake – because the person asking the question was Dr Rosena Allin-Khan, who has been working as a doctor in an Accident & Emergency unit, treating coronavirus patients, while Hancock has been sitting in Downing Street with his thumb up his posterior, making up test results by any means he could.
Here’s the exchange:
Here’s my full question to the Health Secretary today.
Undoubtedly it made for difficult listening and the hostile response reflects that, but it’s the truth, it’s fair to ask questions and frontline workers need their voices heard. pic.twitter.com/3hZBJT3YFx
— Dr Rosena Allin-Khan (@DrRosena) May 5, 2020
Dr Allin-Khan later said she would “not watch my tone when dozens of NHS and care staff are dying unnecessarily,” according to Sky News.
And she’s right, by the way – the UK government’s testing strategy has been non-existent.
We’ve heard all sorts of targets, ranging from 250,000 a day to just 10,000 and back up to 100,000. None of them were reached by the Tory government when they were supposed to be.
Last week, Hancock lied to the nation, claiming that he had managed to reach his personal target of 100,000 tests a day by April 30. He had not. His figures included tests that had been mailed out but not used.
And these included multiple tests sent to individual homes with no return address, that subsequently had to be destroyed.
The daily testing total since April 30 has fallen back below 100,000 and you will have noticed that Hancock’s answer in the video clip referred only to a “capacity” of 108,000 tests per day.
That’s less than the number he claimed were carried out on April 30. This wretch just contradicted his own lie!
Worst of all – and underlying this argument – is the fact that the UK’s coronavirus death toll is now the worst in Europe:
The government’s tally of fatalities across the UK reached 29,427 for those who tested positive for coronavirus, exceeding the 29,029 recorded in Italy – until now Europe’s worst-hit country. Italy’s total does not include suspected cases.
Newly released data from the Office for National Statistics showed that 29,648 deaths were registered in England and Wales with Covid-19 mentioned on the death certificate by 2 May. With the addition of the official death figures for Scotland and Northern Ireland, this was calculated to take the UK’s toll to 32,313.
The true figure is likely to be significantly higher due to missed cases and a lag in reporting.
I wonder what the totals look like when differences in population – numbers and composition – are taken into account?
I reckon that would make the UK look much, much worse.
And the liar Matt Hancock wants an NHS doctor to modify her tone.
He has managed to be both unaccountably arrogant and irresponsibly pathetic at the same time.
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