Be careful to avoid non-Covid-related injuries this Christmas, doctor warns

People have been warned to be especially careful and try not to end up in hospital for “avoidable non-Covid-related reasons” this Christmas, as the medical profession faces a “perfect storm” of pressure.

By Iain Lynn
Friday, 18th December 2020, 3:45 pm

The public should take extra care to avoid seasonal hazards such as burns from fires sparked by candles or turkey-related injuries, a medic has said.

Dr Katherine Henderson, president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, urged people to be “incredibly careful” and remember that everything has a “sprinkling of Covid” this year.

“Just don’t make anything more risky than it needs to be,” she added.

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People should avoid "turkey-related injuries" this year

As she and her colleagues on the front line prepare to face another Christmas Day on the wards, she said this will be “completely different”.

December 25 is usually a “friendly” and “happy-as-it-can-be” type of day, she said, but added: “This time we’ve got real worries and we really need people to be very, very careful.”

With hospitals already facing rising numbers of patients with coronavirus, and trying to balance their non-Covid work with staff sickness and a lack of beds, she said people need to try not to add to that pressure.

She said: “Watch that turkey-baster, be careful with your oven, don’t set fire to your curtains with candles.

“All the things that are usual common sense, but just be aware that everything’s got an extra Covid flavour, sprinkling of Covid.”

She said staff would miss their annual festive lunch due to social-distancing rules.

“It’s the simple things,” she said. “One of the highlights of our day was our Christmas lunch.

“We can’t do an en-masse Christmas lunch because we wouldn’t be able to socially distance it.”

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