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Forgotten victims of the corona pandemic: From a 7-year-old girl battling seizures to father-of-three who needs cancer surgery, the patients in limbo after their NHS treatment was put on potentially tragic hold

Forgotten victims of the corona pandemic: From a 7-year-old girl battling seizures to father-of-three who needs cancer surgery, the patients in limbo after their NHS treatment was put on potentially tragic hold
  • Victims include seven-year-old Lyla O'Donovan who has a brain tumour
  • Operation to relieve pressure on brain and stop seizures is delayed 
  • Two million operations cancelled and 2,700 cancers a week left undiagnosed 
They are the forgotten victims of the corona pandemic — patients caught up in a devastating NHS crisis which is costing thousands of lives.

From a seven-year-old girl battling with seizures to a father-of-three who needs cancer surgery, every one of them has had their treatment put on hold while the NHS diverts resources to fight the virus. 

And many of them believe it could result in their death.

Last Saturday, the Mail revealed the true scale of this emerging national tragedy. 

Two million operations have been cancelled and an estimated 2,700 cancers a week left undiagnosed.
Senior research fellow Dr Paul McKay works in the lab space created exclusively to help create a Covid-19 vaccine at Imperial College London
When will trials start? Animal trials began on February 10 and human trials will start in the 'summer', the team has said.
Will it be ready soon? Professor Shattock says that if 'all goes well, it will be available some time next year'. However, last week he said: 'If social distancing and lockdown work really well, it will take us longer to determine whether a vaccine works'.
How confident are they? The professor has said only this: 'I think we are very confident that some vaccines will come through and work.'
Any pluses? A simpler approach than the Oxford one, this is a 'synthetic' vaccine that contains no live virus. Professor Shattock says it would be easy to scale up production, and a litre of vaccine would give one million doses.
Possible pitfalls? 'This approach [using RNA in a lipid] has never been successfully used as a human vaccine,' says Professor Openshaw.
'In pre-clinical models it works well, but previously when you give this type of vaccine to humans it doesn't work.'

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