IslingtonTribune

The independent London newspaper

The NHS is at your service

22 May, 2020

• AS rates of new Covid-19 infections begin to fall I wanted to write to provide some reassurances about using NHS services.

I also want to thank our local community for their support and under­standing over the past eight weeks.

To concentrate on our response to the pandemic we took the decision to suspend all but the most urgent operations and treatments.

We also changed the way that many of our services work to ensure that we could provide services such as outpatient appointments safely. This included transferring over 20,000 face-to-face outpatient appointments to take place over the phone.

We are now looking at how we can begin to restart some services and are working with NHS organisations across north central London to ensure that patients who need us can receive the safest care as soon as possible.

We continue to innovate how our services are provided. For example, some outpatients are now able to choose to have a video appointment.

While staying at home whenever possible remains vital, we understand that some people are avoiding using NHS services such emergency departments and GP surgeries when they are unwell and not attending pre-booked treatment and important face to face appointments.

Some people may worry about being a burden at a busy time and others may be scared that they may catch Covid-19.

I want to take this opportunity to reassure everyone that across your local NHS we have put in place a number of safeguards to ensure that all of our patients and colleagues are kept safe.

So while I thank you for staying at home, your NHS is still here for you and if you need medical advice or treatment visit www.nhs.uk, call NHS 111 or your GP (or visit their website to book an appointment) or come to our emergency department if you need to.

Don’t wait. It is safe to see us, when you need us.

SIOBHAN HARRINGTON
Chief Executive,
Whittington Health NHS Trust

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