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NHS Covid crisis: Full list of 15 hospitals that have declared 'critical incidents'

Morecambe Bay NHS Trust, Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, The United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust, the Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust and University Hospitals Dorset are among the hospital trusts that have signalled they may be unable to deliver vital care to patients due to staff shortages.

Meanwhile, 17 hospitals in Greater Manchester have paused non-urgent surgery and appointments, although a critical incident has not yet been declared at the sites.

It comes after 15% of Greater Manchester hospital staff fell sick with Covid or had to self-isolate, far higher than the usual staff absence figure of 5% over winter.

Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and Calderdale Royal Hospital have also taken steps to protect staff and patients by banning visitors to both sites.

Despite the desperate situation, Boris Johnson yesterday declared he hopes to 'ride out' the current wave of Covid without any further restrictions.

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, said hospitals are able to get assistance from nearby hospitals and other NHS trusts after declaring critical incidents.

He added: "It is a sensible, planned thing to do to ensure that trust can carry on providing the services that it needs to provide, particularly the critical and essential services."

Despite this, Mr Hopson also stressed that while there are some staff shortages within the NHS, they are localised.

Some are estimating that up to a quarter of staff could be off work with coronavirus but Mr Hopson said the data does not suggest this to be the case.

The six trusts which have declared a critical incident publicly were responsible for 15 hospitals.

Morecambe Bay NHS Trust manages Westmorland General Hospital in Kendal, the Royal Lancaster Infirmary in Lancaster and Furness General Hospital in Barrow-in-Furness.

Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is responsible for Blackpool Victoria Hospital and two smaller community hospitals - Clifton Hospital and Fleetwood Hospital.

The United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT) manages Lincoln County Hospital, Grantham and District Hospital, Pilgrim Hospital Boston and County Hospital Louth.

he 11 hospitals affected by 'critical incidents' amid covid crisis

  • Morecambe Bay NHS Trust
  • Westmorland General Hospital
  • The Royal Lancaster Infirmary
  • Furness General Hospital
  • United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Lincoln County Hospital
  • Grantham and District Hospital
  • Pilgrim Hospital Boston
  • County Hospital Louth
  • Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Blackpool Victoria Hospital
  • Clifton Hospital
  • Fleetwood Hospital
  • The Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • The Great Western Hospital in Swindon, Wiltshire
  • University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust
  • Derriford Hospital

The Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust manages just one hospital, the Great Western Hospital in Swindon, Wiltshire.

University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust, which is responsible for Derriford Hospital, cited "high pressure" on urgent care and an increasing demand for Covid-19 beds.

University Hospitals Dorset, which has become the latest trust to announce a critical incident, runs Christchurch Hospital, Poole Hospital and the Royal Bournemouth Hospital.

Management at one of the affected trusts, United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS, said “extreme and unprecedented” staff shortages, due to so many medics being off isolating, were expected to result in “compromised care”.

Meanwhile, chief executive of University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay, Aaron Cummins, confirmed in a statement that the trust had declared an “internal critical incident”.

In an internal message from Mr Cummins shared on Twitter, he told staff that “sadly, despite everyone’s best efforts, many of our patients are still receiving a level of care and experience that falls below the level of standards we would like”.

Jo Beer, chief operating officer of the University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust, said the trust had this morning communicated to staff that Derriford Hospital was operating in an internal critical incident.

"We currently have 99 Covid-19 positive patients across Derriford and our three community hospitals and just under 500 staff absent for Covid-19-related reasons," she said.

She said they didn't want people to be alarmed; the decision to escalate the situation was taken as a step allowing the trust to take additional steps to maintain safe services for patients and help staff cope with growing pressures.

[Source: The Mirror, London, 05Jan22]

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