Share your experiences of COVID-19 and winter pressures

by Peter Blackburn

The BMA has launched an online portal for doctors and medical students across the UK to share their experiences of how winter pressures and COVID-19 are affecting their working lives and the care given to patients.

Location: UK
Published: Monday 16 November 2020
Person on gurney rushed through A&E

During the winters of 2018 and 2019 the association opened an online resource for staff which captured the emerging trends in workplaces and the impact growing pressures were having on doctors working on the front line.

And, during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic this year, the BMA used a similar system to build as much knowledge about the experiences of doctors as possible and to take the issues they were facing to ministers and to the media.

BMA council chair Chaand Nagpaul said: ‘These portals have provided invaluable intelligence and support for the work of the BMA in being a voice at the heart of the national debate around winter pressures and COVID-19. We have been able to use the experiences of doctors to lobby for action on PPE [personal protective equipment], NHS funding, and the lack of support for BAME staff in hospitals and GP practices among many other areas.

‘With the country in a national lockdown, coronavirus cases rising in most areas and winter on the way it is crucial we are able to support doctors in the best way possible. Please share your experiences of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, winter pressures and how they are combining in your workplace. Every submission will help us give doctors a louder voice as the NHS goes into the difficult months ahead.’

It comes as the NHS faces growing pressure which is likely to worsen in the coming months. This week it was revealed that 139,545 people are waiting more than a year for treatment – the highest number since 2008 and 107 times greater than in September 2019. And latest figures show the UK has now exceeded 50,000 coronavirus deaths.

During the coronavirus crisis the BMA has surveyed unprecedented numbers of doctors to understand the issues in their areas and workplaces. The results of the COVID-19 tracker surveys have assisted the BMA to challenge the Government on behalf of members and campaign for the support doctors working on the front line need.

Access the portal and find out more