The NHS and care services across Lancashire and South Cumbria continues to see sustained levels of pressure, with high levels of bed occupancy, from the impact Omicron has had on hospital admissions in recent weeks, high staff absences due to Covid-19, and high demand for services as a result of annual winter pressures, all coming together to create a very challenging situation.
Following agreement with NHS England as lead on the Nightingale Surge programme, we have decided to use the new temporary structure at Royal Preston Hospital from Thursday 27 January to help our ongoing discharge efforts.
The hub is a high quality and well equipped space, which will be used for low acuity patients who do not have Covid, with the additional bed base allowing us to free up space within Lancashire’s emergency departments and within its hospitals.
Clinicians have developed clear criteria regarding which patients are suitable to go into the Nightingale Surge Hub and trusts across Lancashire will work to staff the hub in support of any patients treated there.
A spokesperson for the NHS in the North West said: “We are supporting the health system in Lancashire and South Cumbria to continue to provide the best quality care possible for patients who need it, during a period of sustained pressure on services and staff due to the effects of Omicron all while pushing to deliver as many routine checks and procedures as possible, including vital diagnostic checks.
“As part of a raft of action being taken, we have agreed a request from local leaders to temporarily use the Nightingale Surge Hub at Royal Preston for a limited number of low acuity patients. Staff will be drawn from across the local health service to ensure that patients transferred to the Hub receive appropriate care, and that the impact on other services is minimal.”
“The local community can continue to support NHS staff by getting their COVID and flu vaccines now if they are eligible, and thinking 111 first for urgent medical help.”