NHS professionals have warned that the UK is racing towards the second wave of coronavirus with ministers concerned that the black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) community may once again be forced to “shoulder the burden of this pandemic” if a “plan of action” is not in place.
The warning comes after a research study highlighted that nearly 70% of the 1700 doctors surveyed “were likely to quit the NHS” frustrated with the government’s handling of the pandemic. This warning from the Doctor’s Association of UK (DAUK) should be a red flag for the Health Secretary especially after 600 healthcare workers, a majority of them from BAME backgrounds, lost their lives during the first wave of coronavirus.
Concerned about some BAME doctors who are still working in high-risk environments, Dr. Rinesh Parmar, Chair of DAUK has disclosed that “it is still an on-going problem.” Speaking exclusively to Asian Voice, he said, “Institutions have previously failed to complete risk assessments and take actions based on those risk assessments to safeguard our BAME colleagues. Some individuals who are deemed high-risk have not been removed from high-risk environments. Although the government has assured that the published BAME review has been forwarded to the Equalities Minister’s workstream, we have not heard anything from them in terms of how the work would be taken forward. We are heading towards a potential second Covid-19 wave and this is not something that can be put on the back burner. It needs to be addressed now.”