Top doctor: The secret COVID plans I never wanted revealed

 

Queensland's top doctor has opened up about secret documents created at the start of the pandemic that she never wanted revealed to the public.

Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young told the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency's podcast Taking Care that she was faced with difficult ethical decisions around who would have to be refused care because hospitals became overwhelmed

"I just did not ever want to get into the ethics of who we'd deny care to," she said.

"My view was let's get ourselves in that situation where we will never have to make those ethical decisions whereas (some clinicians) felt more comfortable having done the work and having it there available.

"That was an interesting dynamic because I really and truly did not want that being worked through and I did not want the community to know we'd done that because then they would be thinking if you're doing that work that must mean you think it's going to happen."

Chief Health Officer Dr. Jeannette Young (News Corp/Attila Csaszar)
Chief Health Officer Dr. Jeannette Young (News Corp/Attila Csaszar)


Dr Young said she felt comfortable being "blunt" about her ethical issues now because of the vaccine rollout.

She said the previous pandemic, the 2009 swine flu pandemic that lasted six months, "nearly killed" her.

"I just lost so much weight, it was awful. At the start of this pandemic I realised early on this was going to be much worse than the previous pandemic so I sat down with my husband and we worked out a way forward."

"I now do 30 minutes of exercise first thing when I get up each morning without fail, even if I desperately don't want to get up and want to sleep in I just do it."

After receiving death threats, Dr Young said she felt supported by Premier and protected by the police.

"It showed that there were some people that felt so harmed by my decisions that it went to that extent which is just awful to think that anyone thought there wasn't a way to work through whatever it was that they felt they'd been put in, that their way of doing it was to threaten the Premier and myself."

Originally published as Top doctor: The secret COVID plans I never wanted revealed


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