Somerset NHS under pressure

The NHS in Somerset today appealed to the public for help. On the very day that Government relaxed COVID 19 measures, we are told “health and care services in Somerset are very busy” More precisely “all health and care services including GP practices, hospitals and adult social care services are under immense pressure.”

Meanwhile in Somerset, as we reported yesterday, COVID 19 case numbers appear to be growing. Additionally according to the latest published figures 70-80 COVID patients are in Yeovil and Musgrove. Daniel Meron, Chief Medical Officer confirmed that: “COVID-19 infection rates are rising across the county. This remains an incredibly challenging time for health and care services in Somerset. Attendances at A&E are high. There are ongoing challenges in discharging patients who are well enough to leave hospital. We are seeing an increase in staff sickness – all of which leads to longer waits than we would like for patients……The Somerset health and care system has taken the decision to move to our highest level of escalation. This is to ensure additional steps can be taken to maintain safe services for our patients.”

This is how you can help:

Help get relatives home from hospital – be ready to collect loved ones from hospital as soon as they are medically well enough to leave. If you can provide some care for loved ones it will help us care for those people who are very unwell.  Very often simple arrangements such as regular visits or help with meals can mean that someone can go home more quickly. 

Review your care at home – if you are receiving care at home that you think you no longer need, please contact your care provider or Adult Social Care so staff can review your care needs. This will support us to make sure care is allocated to help someone else to remain in their own home or leave hospital with the right support.

Access health services wisely – if you don’t know which service is the right service for you click or call 111 first. 111 can provide advice and direct you to the best place for the care you need.

Use your local pharmacy https://www.somersetccg.nhs.uk/health/local-services/pharmacies/– they can offer clinical advice and over-the-counter medicines for a range of minor illnesses, such as colds, sore throats, tummy trouble and aches and pains. Pharmacies are open throughout the day, evening and on weekends and you can be seen without an appointment.

Check the latest guidance on visiting health settings before you go – if you are visiting a relative or loved one in a health or care setting, or are planning to come to an appointment with them, please check if there are restrictions in place.

Protect yourself – the vaccination remains the best form of protection against coronavirus. You can book your vaccination through the National Booking System (https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/) or look for walk in sites on the Grab a Jab https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/find-a-walk-in-coronavirus-covid-19-vaccination-site/ site.  Eligible for a free flu vaccination? You can book your flu vaccination here https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine/

Help prevent the spread of COVID-19 – continue to wear face masks, sanitise your hands regularly and socially distance where possible in our hospitals and healthcare settings. COVID-19 affects how we run our services and we care for very vulnerable patients, so it is important that we do all we can to minimise the spread of the virus.

  • Help look out for your community – check in on relatives and neighbours who might need extra support.
  • Check out our advice and guidance – Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group has a webpage full of information and advice on the different services, apps and support available. You can find the information on their choose well page: https://www.somersetccg.nhs.uk/health/choose-well/

One comment

  • I took a neighbour for a vaccination today (in her 90’s, she’s had 1st, 2nd, Booster and today 4th). There was no queue at all, the staff welcomed her to such an extent that two vaccinators (laughingly) asked who she would like to be vaccinated by, she was on-site for maybe 15 minutes. Whilst we were there two more “prebooked customers” came in. The site is accepting walk-ins, but there was no-one.
    We know that Covid is a major problem; we have protestors saying that vaccination is wrong; some people refuse to be vaccinated because they have seen on facebook that it alters their DNA.
    Why is it that with this major problem all around us that vaccination centres are underutilised?

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