'How rude of us to hallucinate PPE shortage – no wonder Hancock looks confused'

While defending his record, Matt Hancock has insisted there was never a national shortage of protective equipment.

This might seem confusing, as we can all remember nurses, such as those pictured at Northwick Park Hospital in April, wearing bin liners.

So if there wasn’t a shortage of proper equipment, the only explanation is the nurses wore the bin bags because they preferred them.

They must have screamed: “These official protective gowns are nowhere near as efficient!”

Once this was discovered, it’s surprising Matt Hancock didn’t insist that all nurses wear bin liners as they’re so much more protective.

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Screen grab of Health Secretary Matt Hancock giving evidence to the Science and Technology Committee and Health and Social Care Committee over allegations by Dominic Cummings
While defending his record, Matt Hancock insisted there was never national shortage of PPE

Maybe other jobs that require protective equipment will learn this one day.

Welders will get rid of those bulky helmets and goggles and tie a Tesco bag round their head instead.

And how much time and money was wasted on suits of armour in the Middle Ages when knights would have been much better protected with a bin liner, and some daisies strung together instead of a visor?

This must also be the reason patients sometimes sleep on trolleys.

It’s not because of a shortage of beds, it’s because trolleys are more comfortable and if you’re lucky, you wake up hurtling through the ward and crashing into an X-ray machine, which is much more fun than a boring bed.

There is another explanation for why nurses wore bin liners rather than official equipment, which is the liners were ­fashionable.

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Perhaps they were ‘Jean Paul Gaultier’ bin liners, as modelled by Naomi ­Campbell at a Paris Fashion Week to launch a new line in summer-wear called ‘Je suis rubbish’.

Even though there were millions of plastic gowns and masks in every hospital, medical staff insisted on wearing the bin liners to look cool.

Model Naomi Campbell presents a creation by Jean Paul Gaultier during the 2015 Haute Couture Spring-Summer collection fashion show on January 28, 2015 in Paris.
Maybe Hancock wants us to believe bin liners worn by nurses was to channel Naomi Campbell in Jean Paul Gaultier at Paris Fashion Week

From then on, this trend of ‘rubbish chic’ spread through the medical profession, with consultants often seeing patients inside a recycling bin, until the fashion changed again.

In April last year, Matt Hancock said: “We need everyone to treat PPE like the precious resource it is,” and suggested nurses should change their protective equipment less often.

Nurses were outraged at the suggestion they were causing the shortage.

But now we know Hancock can’t have said that, because there never was a shortage.

We must have all imagined he said it, even though it looked like him and sounded like him and was on the news.

How rude of us, to all have an identical hallucination like that. No wonder he has such a confused expression.

Many nurses have told how there wasn’t any PPE available so they had to treat patients without any – and caught the virus.

But they must all have been dreaming because there was no shortage.

Normally, when someone who can’t remember anything they’ve done or said or anything that’s happened over the last year goes into a hospital, they’re put through a series of tests before being offered treatment.

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In this country, we make them Minister for Health.


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