Four out of five healthcare workers expect second COVID wave

Eir NolsoeData Journalist
August 11, 2020, 4:39 PM UTC

Some 84% of healthcare professionals believe there will be a second wave of coronavirus, as a quarter of NHS workers who need PPE still report shortages

The Prime Minister may hope for a ‘return to normality by Christmas’, but the vast majority of healthcare professionals are not quite as optimistic. A third (33%) believed a second wave is very likely while half  (51%) said it’s fairly probable when surveyed in late June. Only 9% believed another outbreak is unlikely. 

NHS staff still concerned about their health and PPE

A quarter of NHS workers (25%) who need PPE still said they lacked adequate equipment, even as the Government in June announced it had delivered two billion items of PPE to frontline workers.

The figure includes 18% who said they don’t have enough of the correct PPE to protect against coronavirus, 5% who only had less suitable equipment and 2% who had no PPE at all.

A breakdown shows that over a fifth of NHS workers who need PPE said gowns (22%), scrubs (22%) and goggles or face visors (21%) are in short supply or entirely lacking. These numbers include one in twenty staff (5%) who said they have no access at all to gowns or scrubs.  

One in seven NHS workers who need PPE also said stock of masks is low (14%) or non-existent (1%). Apron (7%) and glove (6%) shortages are less common but are still an issue for some.

Overall, three in ten NHS workers (31%) said it’s fairly (23%) or very likely (8%) that they will contract coronavirus in their workplace. And while the Prime Minister recently announced that anyone can now use public transport, 31% of healthcare professionals said it’s fairly (12%) or very (19%) difficult to socially distance on their commute.

See the full results