Our health services across North East London (NEL) are under significant pressure, with no easement in sight expected until after 11th January. The coming bank holiday weekend appears particularly challenging with bed usage in all hospitals across NEL now already dramatically higher than at the peak of the first wave of Covid-19.
Many staff being off sick has made the situation worse with dramatically increased nursing ratios. Homerton Hospital needs our help and support, now.
In addition, pressure across the system includes long waits for advice from 111 and a high call abandonment rate with a knock on impact to A&E. Approximately 45% of all LAS calls do not currently require transfer to an acute hospital, indicating that many patients could be managed through a different route. All providers have put a call to their staff to cancel annual leave and help staff services.
Across NEL, primary care is also being asked to look at what more can be done to support the system and their local hospitals over the next few weeks. This includes a request to:
• Increase capacity in GP Access Hubs and Covid-19 Hot Hubs;
• Provide support to our local providers (acute, community).
Via this email we are asking GPs who have spare capacity over the New Year period and into January to consider offering to carry out sessions for any of the following:
• GP Federations to staff the extended GP Access Hubs and Hot Hubs (contact: email@example.com);
• Homerton University Hospital including to support A&E, wards and delivery of the Covid-19 vaccine programme (contact: firstname.lastname@example.org with OH and DBS details).
In addition please could we ask practice nurses if they have capacity and are willing to provide sessions for any of the following:
• Homerton University Hospital including to support on wards and delivery of the Covid-19 vaccine programme by joining the staff bank (contact:email@example.com with OH and DBS details).
Lastly, there are opportunities for administrative and managerial staff to get involved on a voluntary basis providing general support to nursing and clinical staff, or providing additional administrative support. If interested in helping out please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If undertaking work at the Homerton, you will not be expected to be an expert or operate at the level you normally do in your usual job; it will be unfamiliar work for all of us working in this way. You will be asked to undertake duties that you are comfortable undertaking.
Please note that if you're already fully committed to delivering the Covid-19 vaccination programme in the community please don't cancel these sessions to take on others noted above.
Thank you for everything you are doing to support patients across City and Hackney and widely across NEL.
With best wishes and many thanks,
Mark and David