Update from Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust

Original content from Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust

COVID-19: an update from our hospitals
Total confirmed cases of COVID-19 across our sites today is 104.
As our COVID-19 admissions reduce, we continue to work on our future plans and balancing the reset of services for patients who really do need them against providing a safe infection-controlled environment. This bulletin will now be distributed fortnightly but this may change if and when we need to provide urgent updates.
COVID-19 patients take part in vital genome study
Patients from across our three hospitals in Basildon, Southend and Chelmsford are participating in a high profile genome sequencing study aimed at determining why COVID-19 affects some people far more seriously than others. The genomes of some 35,000 people will be sequenced by a consortium led by the University of Edinburgh and Genomics England. Around 20,000 of the genomes will be from people admitted to intensive care due to the virus and 15,000 from people who experience mild or moderate symptoms. Patients are only enrolled in the study if they or their next of kin have given consent.
New Trust-wide Critical care services
Work has started in earnest to set out how we will be delivering services over the coming weeks and months.

One of the first steps has been to set up a new Trust-wide critical care service so we can move quickly to make changes which will benefit our sickest patients now and over the coming months.

That is likely to mean caring for patients with COVID-19 on a single site so we can start to stand up other services while keeping staff and patients safe. Our plans are being broken down into phases.

Firstly we are looking at what we can do between now and the end of June to start to treat patients who need urgent care, and those who have been waiting the longest for planned treatment.

We need to put those plans into place quickly so we can ensure our patients are getting the care they need.

After June we will start looking at how we re-start all of our business as usual services, while continuing to deal with COVID-19. There is little doubt that the virus will affect us – and the world – for some considerable time to come, so we need to be designing new ways of working that are effective and resilient.We will be looking at what services we could bring together and what need to be kept separate to ensure everyone’s safety and that the public have confidence in us as an organisation.

So much of this work will still be in line with our existing clinical strategy –bringing clinical expertise together to provide the best outcomes for patients. We will continue to keep you updated, and value your feedback about what has worked well and what more we can do over the coming weeks and months.
Advice and guidance hotline for care of frail and elderly patients

A 24/7 advice and guidance hotline is available ensuring GPs and other primary care partners can get rapid access to specialist advice to support decision making on the clinical management of frail elderly patients in the community. Each of our three hospitals has a dedicated hotline number supported by a rota of available and appropriate clinicians to support the service and provide advice and guidance over the phone. The service works on a shared care plan and all decision making is in the best interests of the patient, recognising the risks versus benefit of having to admit patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.
International Nurses’ Day

International Nurses’ Day was celebrated this week (12 May) and our chief nursing office, Diane Sarkar, took the opportunity to thank every member of our nursing staff as well as highlight the evolving role of the nurse and the new opportunities available to develop new clinical skills and competencies, research education and leadership. Diane added: “The recent merger of our of our three acute hospital trusts is also opening up new opportunities for nurses and midwives – and this includes the next generation of nurses studying at local universities across the region.  We should recognise that they are highly skilled clinical professionals as well as the caring face of the NHS.
Donations to our hospital
Our local communities have been so generous in their support and we are incredibly grateful. The Mid and South Essex Hospitals Charity has launched an emergency appeal to support the health and wellbeing of patients and staff. Donations can be made via: