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Ex-miners in Scotland asked to sign ‘do not resuscitate’ forms if they contract coronavirus

EX-MINERS in Scotland are being asked to sign “do not resuscitate” forms if they contract the coronavirus, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) told the Star today.

NUM general secretary Chris Kitchen, a former miner at Kellingley colliery in Yorkshire, said: “We have had information from Scotland that ex-miners were being contacted by the NHS and asked if they got it, would they not want to be resuscitated, and asked if they were happy to sign a ‘do not resuscitate’ note.

“You work all your life down the pit, fight for your country, then are told: ‘Do not bother us if you need help’.”

A spokesman for the Scottish government’s health department said the report “is not a policy across the NHS in Scotland.”

Former miners are at greater risk of dying from coronavirus because so many have pre-existing respiratory conditions after years working in the coal industry.

Mr Kitchen told the Star that the union has had to shut down its countrywide advice surgeries on issues such as benefits and injury claims because of the virus.

He said: “It is definitely a concern we have got, and is the reason we decided not to open our rest home at Scalby on the Yorkshire coast this year, because the ex-mineworkers who go there are elderly and have pre-existing conditions from working down the pit.

“All our benefits surgeries have been suspended. We are in lockdown and it has blocked ways of keeping in touch with ex-mineworkers.”

 

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