COVID-19: Health and care leaders update on local progress

An open letter outlining some of the progress made in re-starting local services has been issued by health and care leaders in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire.

The letter, which is signed by NHS, council and community organisations, recognises developments across a range of services from online GP appointments to home visits, community services, and hospital wards.

Despite this progress, enhanced safety precautions due to coronavirus mean there are fewer hospital beds available due to the need for extra spacing, and waiting lists for some routine procedures are likely to be longer as more time is needed for equipment deep cleaning and for staff PPE changes.

Julia Ross, Joint Healthier Together Lead Executive and Chief Executive of Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group, said:

“Many health and care services have now re-started and our aim is to get these services back to their pre-pandemic levels ahead of winter. The challenge is doing this in a way which keeps everyone safe.

“Keeping a lid on coronavirus is crucial in getting services working as we would like, especially looking ahead to the winter period which is traditionally a challenging time for the NHS and our partners.

“I would like to reassure people that we can and should continue to access local health and care services following the guidance provided; whether it is keeping socially distanced, wearing facemasks as directed, or good hand hygiene.”

The full open letter shares details of local services which have restarted and also references this winter’s ‘flu programme. Download the full letter below in your preferred language.

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