Covidiot conspiracists slammed for sharing 'fake' video of empty hospital
( Daily Star )
Health bosses have slammed conspiracy theorists for sharing a fake video online wrongly claiming a hospital was empty.
Croydon Health Services NHS Trust, which runs Croydon University Hospital in south London, warned misinformation risks people’s health.
It comes after a video filmed in an entrance foyer and the hospital’s corridors had circulated on social media since New Year's Eve, MyLondon reports.
People sharing it have wrongly claimed it showed the hospital was deserted and not treating coronavirus patients.
The NHS trust stressed the hospital is "extremely busy" with more than 200 patients with Covid-19 receiving treatment.
Health chiefs pointed out patients are not looked after in corridors, where the video was filmed.
In a tweet posted today, the trust said: "Contrary to videos circulating online claiming to show our hospital is empty, our services remain extremely busy.
"We provide this care in our wards and in other clinical areas – not corridors or waiting rooms.
"Our dedicated staff are hard at work treating more than 210 patients with Covid-19, whilst continuing to provide safe care for anyone who needs urgent or emergency treatment."
Many NHS staff have "cancelled leave over Christmas and New Year to look after sick patients" at the hospital, it added.
The statement continued: “Like every key worker, they have bravely stepped forward to look after people throughout this pandemic.
"Perpetuating myths and rumours only undermines their hard work It also risks the spread of misinformation, which could lead people to risk their own health and the health of their loved ones.
"You can help the NHS by sharing the correct information with your friends and networks.
"We know Covid-19 spreads quickly and it spreads easily. We need people to stay at home unless absolutely necessary, in line with Tier 4 guidance.
"We also need everyone to wash their hands, wear their masks and keep a safe distance from others at all times. Please #HelpUsHelpYou"
It is not known when the footage was taken but it has been reported as being filmed last Wednesday (December 30).
This would have been a day after Matthew Kershaw, chief executive of the NHS trust, warned the hospital was “very, very busy”.
Speaking last Tuesday, he said: “We have expanded our capacity here in Croydon, as have hospitals around the capital and indeed across the country.
“So we have increased our critical care capacity, we’ve also got expansion capacity for general beds as well.
“So we have responded, thus far, well to the needs of our population.”
He added: “It is very, very busy… and it’s a really important and difficult moment but we are responding well at this moment.”
Figures show 3,231 people tested positive for the virus in Croydon in the seven days to December 28.
Croydon had an infection rate of 835.5 per 100,000 people for the seven days to December 28, the 14th highest in London.
Thurrock in Essex has the highest infection rate in the country with 1,239.5 cases per 100,000 people, according to the latest data.