Soldiers will have to be drafted in to help staff 'Nightingale' wards

Staffing eight make-shift ‘Nightingalewards set up in hospital car parks will be a ‘major challenge’, health bosses warn

  • NHS chiefs announced eight hospitals in England will build make-shift wards
  • Health service is already on a ‘war footingamid rising Covid admissions
  • But leaders warn there are not enough staff members available for more beds
  • Staffing temporary ‘Nightingalewards in car parks will be a ‘major challenge’, health bosses warned today.

    NHS chiefs last night announced eight hospitals in England will start building make-shift structures this week to house up to 100 Covid patients each.

    The overspill sites — which could also be erected in canteens and gyms if needed in the coming weeks — will be equipped with beds and machines for patients who still need minor treatment.

    The drive forms part of a new NHS ‘war footingto tackle the Omicron wave, which is starting to pile pressure on hospitals.

    But questions have already been raised as to how the units will be manned.

    クリスホプソン, chief executive of NHS Providers — which represents hospital trusts — said staffing the makeshift wards posed a ‘major challenge’.

    彼が追加した, しかしながら, that having the facilities on existing hospital grounds ‘maximises the NHS’s ability to meet that challenge’.

    その間, Pat Cullen, from the Royal College of Nursing, warned that it would mean nursing resources are ‘spread thinner’. She said that she had ‘no ideahow the hubs would be staffed.

    The above shows where England's eight new 'mini-Nightingales' will be set up. These will aim to treat 100 Covid patients following a stay in intensive care, and will be on hospital sites to ensure they can be properly manned. Previous Nightingales could not get enough nurses

    The above shows where England’s eight new ‘mini-Nightingaleswill be set up. These will aim to treat 100 Covid patients following a stay in intensive care, and will be on hospital sites to ensure they can be properly manned. Previous Nightingales could not get enough nurses

    A row erupted over the Government¿s Covid figures as it emerged almost one in three in hospital with the virus was admitted for unrelated reasons. 写真: Boris Johnson visiting a Covid vaccination centre in Milton Keynes on Wednesday

    A row erupted over the Government’s Covid figures as it emerged almost one in three in hospital with the virus was admitted for unrelated reasons. 写真: Boris Johnson visiting a Covid vaccination centre in Milton Keynes on Wednesday

    Trade site the Health Service Journal revealed the plans for more ‘mini-Nightingalesbefore Christmas. It said at the time that army medical personnel could be called in to help, although the formal request was yet to be made.

    The Nightingale hospitals will be staffed by nurses and consultants, as well as clinical and non-clinical staff.

    It is not clear whether this would include soldiers, but NHS sources told MailOnline that the Army are always drafted in when required.

    Row erupts as data shows a third of Covid patients are in hospital for reasons other than the virus

    A row erupted over the Government’s Covid figures last night as it emerged almost one in three in hospital with the virus was admitted for unrelated reasons.

    NHS statistics revealed the proportion of so-called ‘incidentalcoronavirus admissions had risen to a record 29 per cent – sparking claims that official figures were misleading.

    These cases are from patients taken to hospital for an unrelated reason, such as a fall or broken bone, who just happen to then discover they also have the virus.

    It means thousands of those who are being counted as Covid admissions – which would suggest they are severely ill with the condition – are not actually suffering seriously with the virus.

    Many only tested positive once they were on wards – and may have simply caught the virus while there.

    It has raised concerns that the headline statistics – which drive Government decisions on restrictions and lockdowns – are overestimating how many people are dangerously sick with Covid.

    広告

    The ‘mini-Nightingaleswill be scattered around the country, with sites based in London, ブリストル, リーズ, Kent and Leicester among others.

    In contrast to the first wave — when facilities such as London’s ExCel centre were converted into giant hospitals — the ‘Nightingale hubswill be situated on existing hospital grounds.

    Health chiefs said this will make it easy to deploy staff if there is a surge in admissions over the coming weeks that outstrips current capacity.

    NHS Trusts have also been asked to identify areas such as gyms and classrooms that can be converted to temporary Covid wards.

    They said this could create an additional 4,000 ‘super surgebeds across the country — eight times the capacity of a large district hospital, which has around 500 beds.

    Mr Hopson said: ‘Building on lessons learnt from earlier in the pandemic, trusts are identifying extra capacity on existing hospital sites that could be turned into super surge capacity should it be required.

    ‘Trust leaders hope this back up insurance policy will never be needed, as with the original Nightingales. But it must be the right ‘no regrets latermove to make these preparations now.

    ‘Given the other pressures on the NHS and the current level of staff absences, staffing this capacity would be a major challenge.

    ‘But co-location on existing hospital sites maximises the NHS’s ability to meet that challenge.

    彼が追加した: ‘We also need to recognise that this will add further stretch to an already hard-pressed NHS.

    Ms Cullen, the general secretary of the RCN, warned today that there were not enough staff available for the extra units.

    彼女はスカイニュースに語った: ‘You can set up all the hubs that you wish to set up.

    ‘But if you don’t have the nursing staff to actually care for the patients that are going to be placed in those hubs, that places more challenges on the nursing workforce.

    ‘The nursing workforce already is struggling massively to care for the patients that are already in hospital, and if we set up hubs and put up additional beds that’s going to place more pressure on those nurses.

    'そう, at this point in time, we have no idea how we’re going to be staffing those additional hubs as they’re set up.

    The NHS was short of up to 100,000 medics even before the pandemic began, データは示唆している.

    It comes after health chiefs warned staff absences pose a bigger threat to the health service than rising admissions due to the virus.

    の合計 18,829 NHS staff were absent because of the coronavirus on December 19, から 12,240 a week earlier.

    And Covid-related absences have tripled in a week at London’s biggest trust, underlying the huge problem the rest of England faces over the coming weeks.

    同時に, the number of admissions has increased. Christmas Day saw 1,281 infected patients placed on wards, アップ 74 per cent in a week to the highest level since February.

    Dr David Nicholl, of the Doctors’ 協会, earlier this week described the ever-growing number of absences as ‘our biggest worryover the coming weeks.

    The number of Covid patients on England’s wards yesterday breached the 10,000 barrier for the first time since early March.

    But NHS figures suggest up to one in three virus patients on wards were admitted for reasons unrelated to the infection, such as a fall or broken bone.

    It means thousands of those who are being counted as Covid admissions – which would suggest they are severely ill with the condition – are not actually suffering seriously with the virus.

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