Saturday May 23rd. The Coronet Diaries

The same tree on the verge but a different day (Photo John Haynes)

A gloomy thought in a green shade. I need to do my antibodies test but as it is a bank holiday weekend probably best to wait for posting until Monday. In the same way that I commented about Bell’s swab so are there issues over extracting sufficient droplets of blood. One less and you are disqualified by a false negative. I was having a Zoom chatter with (Dr) Martin Scurr today who knows a thing or two about blood letting. He told me that in spite of taking thousands of bloods he had anxious moments getting his own five droplets and had to use all three pipettes. He also gave me a few useful tips.

“Stand upright, make sure you are warmer than you would want to be and finally hold a hot cup of tea in the hand you are taking blood from for 3-4 minutes.”

The reason I have gloomy thoughts in a green shade is because they are thoughts that most people don’t want to hear. I am not a die hard pessimist but neither do I belong to the larger camp of graduates whose motto is: ‘human kind cannot bear much reality’. (I always want to inset a ‘too’, but Eliot’s ‘reality’ is not inflected). It feels like Brexit all over again, hard to communicate authentically with the other camp.


At risk of repeating myself almost everything about our future health depends upon whether or not having raised IgG’s and the MgG’s and all the other G’s has any relationship to immunity, even for a respite of several months, from becoming reinfected with COVID. This rough beast of a virus is sadly and simply more closely related to the common cough and cold – as even Government is now muttering in its drip-fed-sub-texts – than influenza. One might go for many years without a respiratory infection only then to catch two or three colds in quarterly sequence. I was told today by a consultant physician that in his London hospital they are only allowed to work three days in a row because they need protection from viral loading. So much for going back to work in open plan offices…

Today’s BMJ leader

 In this age of constitutional casualism, any suggestions for how to design an enquiry whose recommendations stand a cat’s chance of being implemented would be gratefully received by Dr Michael Gill Former Regional Director for Public Health for South East England, and our neighbour.


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