Operations cancelled as 'critical incident' declared across Nottinghamshire healthcare

A critical incident has been declared for healthcare systems in Nottinghamshire due to ‘unprecedented’ pressure on services.
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The Integrated Care Board announced this afternoon, July 27, there are ‘significant levels of Covid-19’ in hospitals across the county, alongside high numbers of patients arriving with other conditions.

It means some non-urgent operations have been postponed and there are longer waiting times for beds.

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The ICB, which recently replaced clinical commissioning groups which deliver local healthcare services, said the incident is an indication of the ‘serious pressure the system is facing’.

A 'critical incident' has been declared across Nottinghamshire's healthcare system.A 'critical incident' has been declared across Nottinghamshire's healthcare system.
A 'critical incident' has been declared across Nottinghamshire's healthcare system.

A ‘critical incident’ is declared when a service loses its ability to deliver critical healthcare.

Nottingham University Hospitals Trust, which runs the Queen’s Medical Centre and City Hospital, said its emergency department is ‘extremely busy’ and encouraged people to call 111 for non urgent care.

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The ICB said in a statement it ‘regrets’ taking the step to postpone operations, but said ‘it is important we focus on patients needing urgent and emergency care as a priority’.

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It said: “There are extended waiting times to access beds within our hospitals. This, paired with difficulties in discharging patients due to a lack of capacity across our care sector, as well as staff absence due to Covid-19, is causing a significant strain on the system.

“As a result, the healthcare system is taking additional steps to prioritise and maintain safe services for patients. Our aim is to prioritise patients with the highest level of need and ensure that we continue to be able to manage emergency care.

“This means some non-urgent operations, where patients require a stay in hospital, will be postponed to prioritise patients with the most urgent clinical need.”

The ICB asked that people only call 999 or attend A&E departments for serious accidents and for genuine emergencies.

Otherwise they ask that people visit NHS 111 online or call NHS 111 for advice on how to get the care needed.