COVID 19 Latest Update Message to Staff and Community

21/03/2020

Dr Bob Brown, Director of Primary and Older People’s Care and Executive Director of Nursing, provides a latest update message to staff and the Community on Saturday 21 March 2020.

“We are working diligently with all our staff, wider agency network and community and voluntary sector to prepare for what is an anticipated surge in the number of people who will be diagnosed with Covid-19 in the weeks ahead. I bring you that assurance on the basis that all our staff, across all our Community Services and our Hospitals, are working together to ensure that we have the right plans in place to look after people whether in Hospital, in Care Homes, in their own home or those who provide or receive support in a range of other locations.”

“As a community this is such an important time. Yes, there is a lot of concern out there but we want you to feel that we are with you, we are talking every day with the Community and Voluntary sector, and we would encourage you, the public, to look out for each other. Please utilise and follow the guidance on social distancing and wash your hands regularly and consistently, and this guidance will continue to be updated so be sure to follow all the official channels. Thank you to everyone who have undertaken so many challenging roles in all of this, from within the Trust or the wider community. I would encourage you all to look after your own health and in this instance will help to look after everyone else around you also”.

“I’d like to acknowledge and pay a really strong message of gratitude to our staff for all their tremendous efforts, whether they are working in district nursing teams, social workers in the community, in hospitals, domiciliary care workers, those who work in the therapy professions, this is a significant time for you personally and for all of our staff.

“Often you will be combining your huge commitment to deliver safe and effective care with your responsibilities at home as well. And I want to acknowledge that that of course will give you at this time a lot of personal concern. We are with you, we will support you and we encourage you to talk to us in the senior management team of the Trust at any time.”

“Some of the most important factors such as access to the right resources to care for people and to personal protection equipment is something the Trust is working on every day.”

“To all our staff and carers in the Community, we want you to hear from us as a Trust that we are with you. We support you and we want to encourage you to use whatever help and advice and guidance is available through the Trust or regionally to support you in these most important days ahead.”

“As a carer you will be concerned about any risks regarding COVID19, and for us as a Trust we would want you to access the 111 helpline. Talk with your key worker if you have access to for example district nursing or a social worker or domicillary care, your GP if you have concerns for the person you are caring for or indeed yourself if you have symptoms of COVID19, such as a persistent cough or indeed a high temperature.

“Reach out for support from around you as a carer. We know in these difficult times, there will be experiences many of you as carers may have whereby any of you as carers may have where you may become unwell yourself, and that’s where advice and support is crucial and we would encourage you to have a contingency plan in place for the person you care for, such as can you access support from another family member or those around you.”

“As a community this is such an important time. There is great concern out there. We would encourage you to look out for each other. There is a lot of coverage in local and national media, the Public Health Agency website and on our official Western Trust website and social media channels.”

“The messages are really, really clear out there: Please utilise and follow the guidance of social distancing, please wash your hands as much as possible. Those are two of the most important steps each of us can take to limit the spread of COVID19. If we work together, support each other and avail of help support and guidance in a timely way we can defeat this really challenging virus more quickly than we might think.

“I encourage you all to look after your own individual health and in doing so you’ll look after many other people as well.”