Doctors are urging Brits to avoid gardening or DIY jobs around the house during the coronavirus lockdown.
They are concerned that work may result in injuries that could add to the strain that hospitals are facing as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive, and Aesthetic Surgeons is urging Brits to avoid starting any task that could lead in a traumatic injury as it could divert NHS staff and resources away for the current coronavirus crisis at hand.
Records show there has already been a spike in the number of power tool related injuries since lockdown was introduced.
In the last week alone, the plastic surgery department at Ulster Hospital in Belfast has treated numerous patients who have injured themselves after using lawnmowers, chainsaws and bikes. Some have even needed to have their fingers amputating.
Alastair Brown, a plastic surgeon at the hospital, said most of the people who had been injured as a result of undertaking a DIY were just looking for something to occupy their time during lockdown.
He said that reconstructive surgery takes many hours in theatre, and these incidents can divert time and precious resources away from very sick patients.
He is therefore asking the public to only partake in risky activities if it is essential, and they know how to use the equipment.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Mark Henley, the association’s president, said: “Healthcare professionals across the UK are working extremely hard to ensure that everyone with Covid-19 receives the care they need and are trying to free-up resources where at all possible.
“With so many people at home, plastic surgeons are particularly worried about the potential for an increase in traumatic injuries from activities such as DIY, gardening, cooking and hot water – if everyone can take extra care, it would be hugely appreciated.”
Research by My Job Quote also found that DIY related incidents cost the NHS on average £222,322,225 in hospital visits every year.
The team used NHS statistics and the Office of National Statistics data on their target audience – people aged between 16 to 65 – to calculate the overall total.
The average cost of visiting A&E is £143, and getting an ambulance to hospital would cost £259.
Out of 64 per cent of those in the study who had completed a DIY task in the last year, 17 percent, that’s one in six, were found to have had an injury as a result of it.
And 26 per cent of these remembered having to visit A&E to recieve treatment, and a further five per cent had to call an ambulance.