This winter has seen unimaginable pressure on our hospitals. Operating theatres have been converted into Covid wards. Children's wards have been repurposed. Planned procedures have again been cancelled.
It's worth thinking back to April of 2020, when we feared that Midlands hospitals would be overwhelmed by the numbers. In Birmingham, they came within days of not being able to cope.
But although there is now extra capacity, and better treatment, the situation is so much worse.
This graph tells the story:
On the left is that April peak in Covid patients. On the right, is the situation now. In many cases hospitals are dealing with more than double the numbers on the wards back in April.
But there is reason to hope that a corner is being turned.
In a few days at the end of last week, the number of new Covid patients being admitted to hospital fell dramatically - by more than a third. If that continues, the pressure on the wards will start to ease in the coming days.