Sheffield doctor proposes brilliant ‘exit strategy’ for weekly NHS clap

A Sheffield doctor has said the Thursday night claps should continue until the Government agree to properly fund the NHS.

Saturday, 16th May 2020, 8:34 pm
Updated Saturday, 16th May 2020, 8:34 pm

Sheffield Children’s Hospital doctor Edward Snelson took to Twitter today to propose an ‘exit strategy’ to the weekly clap, which has seen members of the public applaud NHS staff for their bravery over coronavirus.

The claps have been taking place now for eight weeks, with hundreds of thousands of people including politicians and even the Royal Family joining in every Thursday evening at 8pm.

Edward acknowledged the socially-distant standing ovation had to stop eventually, but argued that it should continue until the Government meet three key tests on NHS staff pay, hospital debt and workforce recruitment.

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He said: “People often ask at the moment, ‘What's the exit strategy for the Thursday clap?’ Is it going to continue indefinitely? If it stops, who decides that? Well, I have a proposal from the NHS worker's point of view.

“How about we all agree that we stop the Thursday clap when the government meet my three key tests?

“The first test is that NHS worker's all have their pay brought back in line with where it was 10 years ago, before it was effectively reduced year on year by below inflation pay rises.

“The second test is that all NHS trusts are brought out of the debts that they have fallen into by a decade of budget cuts. Being told that you need to find the money to provide better care by finding cost savings is like trying to make a bigger meal with less food.

Staff at Royal Preston Hospital are overwhelmed by the response from the public and join in with the clap for carers (photo: Neil Cross).

“The final test will be that recruitment matches the workforce needs of the NHS, by whatever means possible. We need the positions from consultant to cleaner to be attractive and ensure retention.

“When all of this come to pass, we will have clapped the NHS in the way that they want and need the most. We will have shown that we truly value and appreciate them enough in practical ways. When all that happens, I'll be part of the biggest ever ‘right back at you’ clap.”

The Twitter ‘thread’ has been retweeted and liked dozens of times already including by Anthony Gore who described it as ‘genuinely brilliant’.