SIXTEEN senior clinical leads for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight have signed a heartfelt plea to ask us to act now to stop the further spread of coronavirus.

In an open letter, health leaders including Mr Alistair Flowerdew, medical director of the Isle of Wight NHS Trust and Dr Michelle Legg, clinical chair of the Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) -  say the R rate (the reproductive rate of Covid-19, which governs how many people can become infected) is close to 1.

The letter says a small rise - to 1.3 - would overwhelm the health service.


The letter is part of a new campaign to wipe out the transmission of COVID-19 in Southampton’s hospitals, called COVID ZERO.

Dunkirk moment

Alongside the heads of the University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, the Isle of Wight's medical leads have added their names to the campaign.

They have called the end of lockdown - and the wait for a vaccine - our 'Dunkirk moment'.

Scroll down to read the letter in full...

The letter says: "The pandemic is still here. The virus is in our community. It is in higher numbers now than when this all started from a few people returning from holidays. The virus remains infectious and dangerous.

"We must not squander this position that has been so hard won. Let's not lose our regained freedoms.

"We don't need to be perfect. We don't need to do everything all the time. We do need to act and do some simple things most of the time and most of us need to do this.

"Wash our hands as often as possible, walk apart when you can, wear a face covering where you can't walk apart.

"Wash, walk, wear will maintain our freedom now, and save lives. It just takes most of us to do it, most of the time."

Isle of Wight County Press:

Isle of Wight County Press: