Micheal Donnelly, who writes a health column was born and bred in Andersonstown, educated at Scolie Mhuire, and studied medicine in Queen's before fleeing across the Lisburn Road to BT9.
He undertook further training in epidemiology at Oxford RHA/University and Harvard Summer School. He rose to be Deputy Director of Heartbeat Wales. In semi-retirement he has been helping out with the pandemic and writing about its implications for health. Micheal is part of a cadre of public health doctors who have been commenting on the pandemic. He splits his time between Belfast and Durham.
The arrival in GB, at least, of the French vaccine Valneva underlines that the pandemic and Brexit are inextricably intertwined when it comes to quarantine regulations, vaccine supply and more recently food on our shelves.
With dire predictions from Dr Anne Kilgannon of the Western Trust and Dr Michael McBride of the Department of Health, there are little signs of the pandemic relenting.
As we end the Christmas holidays, there is no sign of the pandemic receding with cases rising above 600 cases per 100,000 and bed occupancies in hospitals nearing 100 per cent.
The words of the song ‘Two Worlds Collide’ are being enacted in front of us with the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, not seen since well before the Battle of the Boyne, in 1623.
On Thursday past, the Health Committee at Stormont heard from the Minister, Robin Swann from the Chief Medical Officer, Dr Michael McBride, and from the newly-in-post Mrs Patricia Donnelly who is co-ordinating the Covid vaccination programme.
The pandemic has not gone away, you know.
With Clare Bailey of the Green Party suggesting that the pandemic should be managed by experts instead of politicians it might be time for further reflection.
With flu vaccine already in short supply, what hope is there for the Covid-19 vaccine with politics taking over from health?
The Health Committee met at Stormont on Thursday past to hear an update from the Health Minister Robin Swann in person and from the chief medical officer Dr Michael McBride by video-call.
With the Assembly in recess it is a good time as any to reflect on how they are managing the pandemic in the North; not as bad as the U.S. but not as good as South Korea.
The number of Covid cases is now being translated into occupied beds with 100 per cent occupancy in South West Area Hospital and Antrim and Craigavon not far behind.
THE debacle at the Danske Bank Premiership clash between Coleraine and Ballymena United was but a microcosm of what is beginning to happen with differing advice from First Minister Arlene Foster and Carál Ní Chuilín, Communities Minister.
The debacle at the Danske Bank Premiership clash between Coleraine and Ballymena United was but a microcosm of what is beginning to happen with differing advice from Arlene Foster and Carál Ní Chuilín, Communities Minister.
Dr Michael Donnelly has been following the latest meeting of the Stormont Health Committee as Covid cases soar.
With Trump down (but popping up periodically) with Covid and in hospital and Derry due to lock down, the Health Minister and Chief Medical Officer (‘plan and prepare’) attended the Health Committee at Stormont last Thursday to brief and advise against a background of some non-compliers.