A message from Lancashire Teaching Hospitals to mark our two year COVID-19 anniversary
This weekend (Sunday 13th March) marks the two-year anniversary of the day we admitted our first patient suspected of having COVID-19 into our hospitals, with a confirmed positive result just days later.
Since then, patients, colleagues, friends and our most dearest have devastatingly lost their lives. Each one of them is sorely missed and we extend our sympathies to everyone who continues to mourn the loss of loved ones.
The pandemic has been a life changing event and has taught all of us many lessons – especially NHS staff, who for 730 days, have worked tirelessly to provide the very best of care to those most in need – making personal sacrifices without question – and continue to do so.
It has been a time of physical and emotional exhaustion and we are grateful to the people of Lancashire and South Cumbria for their unwavering support and patience. Your acts of kindness and your generosity have helped keep spirits high and we are grateful to all of you.
Despite the unprecedented challenges which continue to affect many of our services, there is much to be thankful for – not least the near 4,400 COVID-19 positive patients who we have successfully discharged home since the pandemic began.
It has been an arduous effort for all involved but through adapting our services our wonderful staff have done their utmost to provide the most appropriate care to those most in need in our communities. We do however recognise that visiting restrictions and the sheer volume of patients has meant that sometimes your experience, or that of your loved ones, may not have been exactly as you would have wished. We are sorry if this has been the case and our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) are here if you would like to discuss any aspect of your experience with us. You can find out more here.
We recognise there is a lot of work to do to restore our elective services and we have made significant progress towards this with the opening of three day case theatres, a purpose built ophthalmology centre and most recently the Nightingale Surge Hub which has provided much needed additional capacity across the region.
Developing and retaining our current workforce, while attracting new people into our NHS family to address the elective care backlog, while transforming our services to be fit for the future, is paramount.
That is why we would encourage anyone considering a career in the NHS to check out our current vacancy opportunities. There is a wide variety of clinical and non-clinical roles available across our Trust, including voluntary roles. Our volunteers are often the first people patients and visitors see and play a crucial role in helping our Trust to deliver the very highest standards of care to our patients.
Finally, please remember that your NHS is here for you. If you have concerns about your health, please don’t delay seeking help. Please contact NHS 111 in the first instance to determine the most appropriate service for your needs, or dial 999 for a medical or mental health emergency.
Kevin McGee OBE
Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust