099) 29/09/20 – 31/10/20

Oct 31

p. 15 a letter about people refusing to Covid distance

p. 21 about Covid fines given out

Pages 4/5 “Covid hotspots: Highest case numbers in city and county” – raw numbers, not figures per 100,000

Oct 30

p. 12 NATIONAL, brief: “96k get virus a day” – in England alone

 . 15 three letters: 

unnamed under “Keeping hospitals clear has to be No. 1 priority”

Mike Deacon under “How come Nightingale hospitals stand empty?”

Charles Bagshaw under “People don’t ‘have to’ report rule breakers” – a response

Oct 29

p. 10 “’Let partners attend all pregnancy scans’” – about pandemic restrictions

p. 15 has four letters,

by Mrs Muriel Harrison “Outstanding care for my husband and me”

by Brian Coleman ”Seeing Tories in light over free meals”

by Frank Friedmann “Supporting an exit plan from the pandemic” – ‘Independent Sage’

by Helen McAteer “Help and advice for living with psoriasis”

p. 22 “Breath test may detect Covid fast” – University of Loughborough

p 24 “’Don’t delay getting help for a stroke’” – as about a quarter of victims have during pandemic

Oct 28

Page 8/9 “AN unwanted milestone as infections in city soar to their highest level so far” – well over twice the rate at beginning of last lockdown


Oct 27

p.  6 “’Manchester got 360m, Liverpool £30m, city 32.6m – treat us fairly’” – Liz Kendall and Joh Ashworth

p. 7 “Minorities ‘hit hardest’ by lack of new lockdown” – Claudia Webbe for national circuit breaker

p. 12 NATIONAL “’No children will go hungry’ – PM”

p. 13 WORLD “France has now ‘lost control’ of Covid 19”

p. 15 a letter by Anna Cheetham under “Feeding children would be the priority for me”

October 24th



p. 12 NATIONAL “Normal Christmas ‘wishful thinking’” – prospect re. virus


p. 15 a letter by Suresh Chauhan under “Why Boris is not doing a great job as leader” – incl. Virus response

p. 32 “NHS trust (Leicestershire Partnership Trust) praised for its mental health hub”


October 23rd

p. 7 “Steep increase in cases could push district into Tier 2, leaders warn” – Charnwood

p. 12 NATIONAL “Test and Trace continues to flop”

p. 19 “Heart care research paper year’s best” – risk factors for heart failure


p. 21 “Young get say on health plan” – Youth Advisory Board on hospital re-organisation, speaking for young people in hospital

October 22nd

p. 4 “Clarification” – that campaigners welcome the extra hospital funding, but…

p. 6 is about Covid:

“County’s worst hit areas…”–“Cases treble since start of the month”—“Eight more deaths at hospitals”

p. 23 “Screening will be done safely, say NHS bosses” – breast Cancer; BC Awareness Month

p. 9 “’Questions’ about care firm” – Councillor Michael Mullaney about Leicestershire County Care Ltd.

October 21st

p. 19 “Study looks at treatment for babies born early” – long problems in 2-6-weeks prematures


p. 25 “Support to help men with breast cancer” – De Montfort University

pages 1 and 6 “Care home closing as watchdog ‘protects safety of residents” – after damning report


p. 15 a letter by Robert Ball under “Lack  of details on plans for community services

Effective community services are crucial, according to NHS bosses, to the success of proposals to reconfigure Leicester’s hospital service. (City’s £450M Care Package, Sep 28 ’20)

In the consultation documention there is frequent reference to work in a community setting but no details are given or justification for changing the clinical pathways so that and more patient care will take place in community settings. 

Community care can include home support, nursing, physiotherapy and other services to keep people well and avoid the need for hospital care. At present there are insufficient community services due years of austerity. 

There are no details either on workload of specified GP practices, urgent care centres, clinics and community hospitals, how many extra staff will be needed to provide this care, how much this extra care in community settings will cost and how much additional funding will be made to community services to provide this care.

The NHS and other policy-makers SAY that moving care out of hospital will deliver the ‘triple aim’ of improving population health and the quality of patient care, while reducing costs.

Community care may not be a ‘magic bullet.’ Research suggests that rather than improving patient care, it will be damaging to patients. The cost of staff and other resources also – in the community can out-weigh the savings from the hospital care avoided.(Nuffield Trust, March 2017)

The absence of detailed information on community care suggests the implications of the plans have not been fully costed and that the full costs of this emphasis on new build and asset disposal (most of the land at the General Hospital) in preference to a refurbishment are unknown or hidden.

October 20th

p. 4 “Seven-day infection rate is still on the rise”

p. 5 “I wish we’d been able to fight lockdown like Manchester” – Soulsby


p. 9 “MP in appeal to remain Covid-aware” – Dr Luke Evans

p. 16 “Covid tiers ‘need an exit strategy’” – businesses

Fears raised that £450m hospital plans aren’t pandemic proof


Campaign launched over hospitals revamp


Pages 1, 6 and 7 “Campaigners battle £450m hospitals revamp plan”; “Have your say online”; “Why is the General Hospital being closed?”; “450m plans will leave NHS short of beds, say campaigners”; “Plans ‘needed rethink’ because of Covid”

p. 15 good letter by David Fish, ex-West Midlands NHS manager, in response to Brenda Worrall, under “NHS managers should listen to their critics”

p. 15 an unnamed letter under “Not everyone can see their ‘virtual GP’” – he/she was not given a choice

p. 18 “Researchers seek people who know about Covid” – ex-victims or their carers

October 19th

Health bosses host online events to talk about £450m hospital plans


p. 15 three letters on Covid:

          by Declan Spencer under “Time is so precious for those most at risk” – young man with Duchenne’s

          Unnamed under “NHS worker hit by Covid testing chaos” – showing up all the faults

          Sheila Pegg under “Younger generation is endangering its elders” – generalising

p. 23 In the House Jon Ashworth under “Good mental health should be core aim of responses to crisis”

Artist Damien Hirst donates limited edition rainbow artwork to Leicestershire NHS (LPT)


October 17th

p. 9 “Cases 4x higher than last month” – county

p. 12 NATIONAL, brief “Medic’s Covid fears” – about hospital admissions

p. 19 “Pregnant women urged to get flu jab” – with double threat of flu and Covid

October 16th

p. 6 “University Covid rate tops 500” – UL, De Mont and Loughborough

p. 7 “’I’d like to trust public to keep us out of tier two’” – county public heath chief

p. 7 “Hancock: Rapid action needed”

p. 8 “’Average age of people dying of Covid is about 80, but…” – county public health chief defends tough stance

p. 8 “Don’t listen to social media – get children tested if you need to” -after rumours that social services would be informed

p. 12 NATIONAL, brief “Paying price of virus” – alleged lack of proper economic planning

October 15th

Highest ever number of new coronavirus cases reported across Leicester and Leicestershire for 2nd day running


Large numbers of coronavirus cases recorded across DMU and Leicester and Loughborough Universities


Pages 3 – 5 about lockdown.

p. 4 Two neighbour’s infection rates outstrip Leicester’s” – Charnwood and Oadby & Wigston


p. 5 “’Circuit breaker may be the only answer to rises’”

 . 12 NATIONAL “Johnson standing by virus approach”

 p. 12 “                 , brief “Winter health worry” – Asthma UK and British Lung Foundation

 ages 24/25 “If I hadn’t talked to someone…” – mental health problems caused by lockdown

oct 14

Pages 2 and 3 “’New measures may not go far enough to stem Covid’” – Prof Ivan Browne

                          “New tiered system comes into force today – and…” – county statistics


                          “New map shows the city areas most hit in fortnight”

Pages 4 and 5 are about the lockdown, its effects and opinions on it

p. 12 NATIONAL “PM ‘ignored Sage advice weeks ago’”

p. 15 a letter by Malcolm Hunter under “Fairness and proper support is needed” – on lockdown

“Given the Government’s previous rush to ease restrictions before fully getting on top of the virus; the inadequacies of their over centralized private test and trace system; and their failure to adequately support people to quarantine, even when they have been identified as needing to do so; re-imposition of more severe restrictions on social contact and economic activity was always going to become necessary and will probably need to go further. 

Repeated (frequently belated) lockdowns are not a long term solution; however and to avoid them the Government also needs to get test and trace functioning properly, by shifting funding to local, public services. It also needs to provide proper support to allow people to quarantine where necessary, without jeopardizing their ability to keep food on the table and a roof over their heads, because studies suggest that less than a quarter of people who ought to be quarantining are currently fully doing so.. .

In the meantime; however, given that ongoing and increasing restrictions on social contact and economic activity are needed; far more also needs to be done to reduce the impact of these measures on individuals and small businesses, by broadening entitlement to support and making it much more generous. Also, if we accept that it is legitimate to ban businesses from trading and people from mixing, in order to control the virus, then it would surely also be legitimate to ban landlords from charging people rent, where individuals and small businesses have lost income as a result of the pandemic, in order to prevent a further epidemic of homelessness and bankruptcies.

Alongside this, to maximize compliance with restrictions, people need to see them as fair. Rules need to be seen as applying to ministers, their advisors and their families, the same as to everyone else and there should be no exemptions from restrictions for certain favoured activities, such as hunting and shooting. In addition, if different restrictions are going to be applied to different areas, then the criteria for deciding what they are need to be seen as applying to all areas, irrespective of who they vote for; and what is and isn’t deemed safe should not appear to depend on whether there is a card reader present.

Oct 12

Pages 6, 8, 9 and three letters on p. 15 are generally around the lockdown, rules, practical and economic implications

p. 7 “Second wave of Covid ‘real and happening now’” Leics. public health

p. 1a2 NATIONAL “Second lockdown ‘is a possibility’” – Prof Peter Horby, Oxford

Oct 10

p. 4 “Hospitals were almost free of Covid patients before the latest spike” – numbers going up


p. 5 “Lockdown review ‘may take place on Monday’” – plus job losses

p. 6 about how schools are coping

p. 7 “Nearly 300 new cases for county and city in just one day” – plus a pub closure

p. 12 NATIONAL “’Two thirds of pay for closed firms’”

p. 15 a letter by Dale Attkinson under “’Inhumane rule change increases Dad’s anxiety” -parents banned from both attending their three-year-old’s eye tests and surgery

p. 22 “80% have suffered from stress during Covid crisis” – De Mont study


Oct 9

p. 10/11 “Girl, 13, took her life at ‘happy place’ while on leave from treatment” – case review,

p. 15 a letter by Brenda Worrall under “Get all the facts before sending in consultation”

I would like to endorse all that Tom Barker said in his letter (Wednesday 30 September) about the public consultation on future plans for the three Leicester Hospitals.The NHS has been underfunded for many years so the capital investment of £450 million must be welcomed by us all, but as this is public money, we all have a responsibility to make sure that it will be spent on providing flexible and comprehensive health care for many years to come.

One of my concerns is that the proposals rely heavily on increased care in community settings in order to prevent hospital admissions. While this is an admirable aim, so far I can find no details of how many extra trained staff will be needed to provide this service or how it will be funded.

In ‘normal times’ there would be public meetings where we could find information, ask questions and discuss all the issues involved. Now, we must rely on the media, printed papers and meetings on Zoom.We have until 21 December 2020 to find out all we can before filling in the consultation questionnaire.

p. 18 “Patients put at risk by ‘mistakes’ in the NHS” – Prof Sue Hignett, Loughborough; lack of safety experts during corona crisis, using ill-fitting PPE and ventilators ‘not fit for purpose’

p. 6 “£60 Covid cases are reported in schools”

p. 7 “20 hotspots revealed” – in county

p. 12 NATIONAL “Virus takes toll on NHS treatment list”

p. 15 a letter by Amanda Hawkins, RNIB, under “New helpline for those with sight impairments”

p. 19 “Academics back herd immunity approach” – they obviously don’t know about housing conditions in less affluent areas – how can you isolate all the vulnerable? –

October 8th

Pages 7 – 12 today are all about virus and lockdown:

p. 7 “’Infection rates have risen in those areas with local lockdown’” Keir Starmer v. BJ

p. 12 NATIONAL “’Consider tighter national measures’” – BJ

pages 8 – 11 all about the effect of the lockdown on Leicester

October 7th

Today, pages 1 – 11, and a letter on people not wearing masks, are about the Leicester lockdown under “100 days”, “MPs demand :Why are we in lockdown, how do we get out?”, about how it is affecting various groups, plans for the future, “City one of few areas with drop in cases”, a timeline and lockdown images.

‘Weary’ city reaches 100 days of Leicester Lockdown with no idea how much more is to come


Leicester MPs demand to know why city remain in lockdown when others with higher rates are not


100 days of lockdown: How the summer we’ll never forget unfolded in Leicester


‘Heart wrenching’: Leicester residents share their personal experiences of 100 days of lockdown


p. 12 NATIONAL, brief “350k seek new GP” – 99 surgeries closed last year

p. 19 “Covid linked with uni centre” – De Mont

*p. 15 a letter by Elizabeth Wenn under “Is 450m health plan really fit for future?” –

October 6th

p. 4 “’Shambles’ as over 600 cases missed off city and county total”

Where 612 coronavirus cases have been added to city and county totals because of counting ‘glitch’


More than 130 cases added to Leicester and Leicestershire’s coronavirus totals in 24 hours


p. 10 “’You learn about how others have benefited…” – Sikh family talking about organ donation

p. 12 NATIONAL “Cases soar after spreadsheet error”

p. 12 “Cancelled ops worry” – Royal College of Surgeons

p. 20 “Never too late…”, subtitled “Exercise and diet aid those with multiple health issues” –  a    10-year Leicester study

p. 23 “Bridgen calls on all to get flu jab”

p. 23 “Star urges get tough…” – urging Afro-Caribbean men to get checked for prostate cancer

October 5th

p. 12 NATIONAL, brief “’Long Covid’ worry”

p. 15 a letter by Charles Bagshaw under “Misguided NHS policy has claimed many lives” – various points

p. 21 “Uni to screen students” – UL, all staff and students, regardless of symptoms, plus trace apps to be compulsory

October 3rd

p. 6 “500 back calls to save birthing unit” – St. Mary’s, Melton


p. 12 NATIONAL, brief “’No health shutdown’” – National Voices demands

p. 22/23 “Millions of pounds…”, about extension to the Matt Hampson rehab centre

October 2nd

Today, pages 6 – 8 are about Covid and the situation, mostly in the county’ starting with “No changes to lockdown rules” – Hancock

p. 12 NATIONAL “North targeted in bid to curb virus”

p. 12 “Concerns over kids” – NSPCC over children in violent homes during lockdown

October 1st

Pages 1, 4 and 5 are about an official report on the Leicester lockdown, criticising the government, under “We got so much wrong…” and Government report criticises..”

p. 15 a letter by Tom Barker under “Don’t rush your reply to NHS consultation”:

“The public consultation to reorganise Leicester’s hospitals began on Monday. These plans include, amongst other things, closing the Leicester General Hospital as an acute hospital and St Mary’s Birthing Unit in Melton; concentrating maternity services onto the Leicester Royal Infirmary; and providing a modest increase in the number of beds.- We are extremely concerned that the Trust’s plans are out of date. In their 1,700 page business case document they make almost no mention of COVID. We need flexibility in our hospital services to deal with a second wave — selling off a large portion of NHS land does not do this.

These plans are worth £450million. We welcome this money after years of underfunding, but it could be a long time before we get capital investment again so getting it right this time is essential. The public should ask whether a few dozen extra beds will be adequate for an ageing and growing population, especially when our hospitals face what used to be called ‘Black Alerts’ (full to capacity) every winter. The least we can expect for £450m of public money are hospitals that are big enough.

We are also deeply concerned about proposals which offer only one guaranteed site for childbirth (except for home births). We think it is potentially dangerous to put all births on the site of the Royal Infirmary – a site frequently gridlocked with traffic. For now, we are asking supporters and the wider public to delay filling in the consultation documents. The consultation will last 12 weeks. Use this time to read some of the documents, engage with the debate, hear what the Trust has to say as well as campaigners. The campaign to challenge the Trust’s plans has been ongoing for many years, but now they have the funding and the public consultation has started, we have limited time.”

September 30th

p. 5 “Lockdown rules for the city and borough altered” – Oadby and Wigston

p. 5 “In Brief” – Covid Statistics and businesses/schools affected

p. 12 NATIONAL, brief “Ventilators not used” -thousands never used

 p. 13 WORLD “Global death toll passes one million” and UN chief’s comments

September 29th


p. 6 the latest statistics and schools’ case figures: 65 students and 45 staff in city

p. 7 Covid policing

p. 10 curry house closure after case found

p. 12 NATIONAL “Scientists critical of 10pm curfew”

p. 10 “My book on my struggle with eating disorders…” awareness raising and advice

p. 22 “Heart attack survivors and experts offer advice” – Sads Awareness Week

September 28th

letter by the Rutland Consortium