'Emotional' GMB doctor confirms care home patients were sent home without tests

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Dr Amir Khan was emotional as he recalled treating care home patients at the height of the pandemic, after Matt Hancock claimed the government put a ‘protective ring’ around them.

The GP reflected on the ‘incredibly difficult’ experience on Good Morning Britain and urged the government to ‘admit mistakes were made’.

‘I can remember it very clearly, it was only a year ago,’ he said. ‘I was seeing patients in care homes and they were being discharged from hospital without being tested.

‘And that isn’t necessarily the fault of the hospitals because they didn’t have the tests.’

‘We saw it spread through the care homes, certainly the care homes I was looking after,’ Dr Amir continued.

‘I get quite emotional when I think about it actually. I’ve been working at the same practice for over 10 years, I know my care home patients really, really well. And they were dying, they were dying from this virus, relatives weren’t able to come in to see them.

‘I was having conversations on the phone with family members when normally I would do that face to face. It was incredibly difficult. And treatment options were limited.’

Speaking about the Health Secretary’s statement that there was a protective ring around care homes, Dr Amir added: ‘To say there was a ring around care homes certainly wasn’t my experience at the time.’

‘We have to admit mistakes were made so we can ensure they don’t happen again,’ the doctor continued. ‘They’re not admitting mistakes were made and that’s a problem.’

Mr Hancock recently said of care homes: ‘My recollection of events is I committed to delivering that testing when we could do it. I then went away and built the testing capacity.’

The Health Secretary took most of the flak during Dominic Cummings’ recent attack on the government, as he took aim at the handling of the pandemic.

Mr Cummings, who quit as Boris Johnson’s top aide in November amid a behind-the-scenes power struggle, told MPs: ‘We were told categorically in March that people would be tested before they went back to care homes. We only subsequently found out that that hadn’t happened.

‘The government rhetoric was we put a shield around care homes – it was complete nonsense’.

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am on ITV.

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