Britain's armed forces to distribute protective equipment to United Kingdom doctors

US Customs officers at the US  Canada border in Lansdowne Ontario

He told The Guardian: "The longer this epidemic goes on for, if doctors feel that there is a widespread lack of personal protective equipment, then some doctors may feel they have no choice but to give up the profession they love because they feel so abandoned by not being given the PPE that the World Health Organisation recommends".

Medical staff had vocally raised the issue of PPE supplies over the weekend, with nearly 4,000 NHS workers signing a Sunday Times letter calling on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to protect frontline staff's lives by resolving the "unacceptable shortage of protective equipment".

The group said that many medical workers "put their lives on the line every day" by treating coronavirus patients without proper protection, and they called on Johnson to ensure an adequate supply of masks, safety glasses, gloves, aprons and protective suits.

Dr Parmar's comments come after Matt Hancock promised a "military effort" to get equipment to health and social care workers.

"Front-line doctors have been telling us for weeks that they do not feel safe at work", the letter said.

There was now enough supply of PPE available, added the statement, but acknowledged that there could be challenges in future due to unprecedented global demand plus the fact that most kit is made in China, where coronavirus hit production. "Of course we will enforce and bring in further strong measures if we need to", Hancock told Sky News.

Nurse and mother-of-three Areema Nasreen, 36, who has no underlying health issues, is also in intensive care at Walsall Manor Hospital after being diagnosed with coronavirus.

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It said the army would "play its part" from this week, offering personnel to "help to manage and offload supplies in busy NHS settings" and distributing PPE supplies to the frontline.

"There have been challenges and I can see that. We're on it and trying to solve all the problems", Hancock said.

"The NHS is working closely with the government, NHS Supply Chain and industry to continue to secure additional supplies", the authorities said in a statement.

"There is a huge logistical operation on because of the nature and the scale of the NHS and the sheer quantity of masks that are rightly being used".

The area has been overwhelmed with visitors", he said.The government warned that Britain would face a shutdown with curfews and travel restrictions if people continued to flout the advice."Well, we're perfectly prepared to do that if we need to because the objective here is really clear which is to stop the spread of the virus.

Emily Lawson, chief commercial officer for the NHS, said: "We need massively increased, urgent volume of these supplies to the frontline in this exceptional set of circumstances. We are extremely grateful for the Army's support in doing so".

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