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Home > News > Cumbria floods - latest impact on NHS services

Cumbria floods - latest impact on NHS services

Posted on Tuesday 8th December 2015
Cumberland Infirmary, Carlisle

Dr Craig Melrose, medical director at NHS England Cumbria and the North East said:

“We are pleased to see NHS services being gradually restored around the county and would like to thank staff again for their continued support and commitment in ensuring patients receive treatment and care in these very difficult circumstances.

“NHS organisations are all working closely together to provide mutual support and share information so we can respond appropriately in the areas of most need.

“We’re able to continue to provide access to services for the vast majority of patients and we would like to thank the public for their continued support.”

Updated summary about NHS services across Cumbria:

Cumbria Partnership Foundation Partnership - Services and staff are working hard to deal with the severe disruption caused by flooding.  Staffing maintained in all community hospitals and mental health inpatient units and contact has been made with vulnerable patients in the community.

All routine community and mental health appointments remain cancelled for the next 24 hours. 

The dental centre at the Cumberland infirmary has power restored but appointments have been affected, so any patients who need the service should contact  dental direct: North Cumbria – 01228 603900 South Cumbria – 01539 716822.

Dr Andy Brittlebank, Medical Director for Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust said: “Because of the significant disruption, we are running essential and urgent services only – unfortunately all routine appointments for community services, mental health services and children’s services remain cancelled and this will be reviewed by tomorrow morning.  Staff are contacting patients to explain this.

“We apologise for any inconvenience however we have made this decision in order to support urgent cases and to help ease the pressure on other areas of the NHS and transport system. 

“Staff are prioritising patients for visits according to need and have been able to reach those requiring urgent attention with assistance from mountain rescue where required.  Community mental health teams and crisis teams are continuing to keep in contact with vulnerable adults to ensure they are safe.

“We are advising staff to come into work as normal as long as they are able and it is safe for them to do so.  We are very grateful to our staff who are letting us know if they are able to offer extra help or if they have been affected, this is helping the coordinated response as all agencies continue to make sure people are safe.”

University Hospital Morecambe Bay Trust – Services at Westmorland General Hospital have returned to normal (from Tuesday 8 December).The Royal Lancaster Infirmary is offering limited surgery – priority will be given to those most in need - and most outpatient appointments running as normal, with exception of: ear, nose and throat; audiology; breast screening and maxillofacial.  Patients should contact the trust on 01524 583506 to find out whether their operation will be going ahead. 

Outpatient clinics at the Queen Victoria Hospital (QVH) have been cancelled due to power outage concerns.

A spokesperson from University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Whilst the recent storm has caused major disruption to Lancashire and Cumbria, the hospitals within UHMBT are coping as well as can be expected.

“We would like to take this opportunity remind patients to only use the hospital’s Emergency Departments in the event of an emergency so that our staff can continue to focus on those seriously ill patients that need urgent attention.

“For patients that do use the hospital services, please remember to bring any prescription medication with you. For those patients who receive home care services involving medication that must be refrigerated, and havebeen affected by the power cut, please call your Home Care Provider helpline number. 

North Cumbria University Hospital Trust – All outpatients, endoscopy and chemotherapy appointments are running normally today (Tuesday 8 December) at both the Cumberland Infirmary and West Cumberland Hospital– patients should attend planned appointments as normal if they are able to do to safely.

All non-urgent operations remain cancelled at both sites and patients are being contacted individually. Some day case surgery is taking place at West Cumberland Hospital today – again patients have been contacted individually.

Power is restored at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle and the hospital is now able to care for stroke and major trauma patients due to the reinstatement of the CT scanner.  Stroke patients who live in West Cumbria can still receive scans at West Cumberland Hospital.

A spokesperson for North Cumbria University Hospital Trust said: “All patients are being safely cared for and staff are working tirelessly to ensure patients are well looked after – sincere thanks to all of our teams who have gone out of their way to offer support at such a difficult time.

“Both hospitals remain extremely busy and we would urge people to only attend A&E or use 999 for serious and life threatening emergencies.  Please dial NHS 111 if you need urgent medical advice or contact your general practice.

“We would like to offer our sincere apologies for the disruption to some of our services and would ask people to please bear with us as we look to regain business as usual over the coming days.  We will be in touch with all patients as soon as possible to reschedule appointments.”

NHS England Cumbria and North East - Most GP practices and pharmacies across Cumbria are open.

Patients are asked to please only contact practices for essential and urgent appointments, and we thank people for their continued patience and cooperation.

We would like to reassure the public that health partners are working together to minimise disruption, help ensure medical staff can get into work, and have the equipment and supplies they need to maintain high quality care to patients in Cumbria.

Glenridding Health Centre

The practice is open, although only the village is only accessible by boat.

Eden Medical Group

Power has been restored to the practice and services are back in place.

Appleby Medical Practice

Practice is open, although there is no electricity at the moment. There is one GP on site, one GP conducting home visits and a GP working from Temple Sowerby.

Closed community pharmacies:

Boots, Appleby

Boots, Cockermouth

Sainsburys, Church Street, Carlisle

Tesco, Warwick Road, Carlisle

Cumbria Partnership Foundation Partnership

University Hospital Morecambe Bay Trust

Services at Westmorland General Hospital have returned to normal.

Royal Lancaster Infirmary is offering limited surgery – priority will be given to those most in need - and most outpatient appointments running as normal, with exception of: ear, nose and throat; audiology; breast screening and maxillofacial.  Patients should contact the trust on 01524 583506 to find out whether their operation will be going ahead. 

Outpatient clinics at the Queen Victoria Hospital (QVH) have been cancelled due to power outage concerns.

North Cumbria University Hospital Trust

The power is back on at the Cumberland  Infirmary in Carlisle

A&E departments remain busy at both hospitals so please only attend the departments or dial 999 in an emergency.

All outpatient appointments running as normal today on both sites as is chemotherapy and endoscopy

Non urgent surgery remains cancelled today on both sites with the exception of day case surgery which  is mostly running at West Cumberland Hospital – patients continue to be contacted directly regarding their operations

Major trauma and stroke patients are being treated at the Cumberland Infirmary again now that the CT scanner has been restored

Staff continue to work extremely hard to ensure patients are cared for and our wards are staffed appropriately

NHS England Cumbria and North East

Most GP practices and pharmacies across Cumbria are open

If unsure which service to use, please call NHS111