CORONAVIRUS: Hospital bosses urge people to follow the guidelines as 'critical incident' declared at Pilgrim

Hospital chiefs have today confirmed that a ‘critical incident’ has been declared at Pilgrim Hospital in Boston and Lincoln County Hospital as Covid-19 cases have surged.

Critical incident declared at Pilgrim Hospital

And they have urged people to follow the guidelines and help stop the ongoing spread of the virus.

Pilgrim had 123 patients with coronavirus on Saturday, with a total of 185 across the United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust (ULHT).

The trust-wide figure of patients confirmed has risen to 191, and ULHT says the information is changing all the time.

The Trust has also spoken of the issues the pandemic is causing among its staff, with many either having the virus or having to self-isolate.

At the height of the first wave, the total number of confirmed cases was 104, according to Boston MP Matt Warman, who said he was hugely grateful for the work the Trust staff were doing.

Speaking to the Standard today, Chief Operating Officer, Simon Evans, said: “We have declared a critical incident at Pilgrim Hospital, Boston, and Lincoln County Hospital.

“The incident is being managed internally with support from our partners and patients should continue to attend appointments unless contacted directly.”

He said this meant some areas in the hospital were currently closed to new admissions or had restricted access.

The situation was “compounded by challenges with staffing with colleagues unavailable because of Covid-19, either directly or needing to isolate,” he said.

“We also currently have a number of inpatients who have been confirmed as having Covid-19 at Lincoln and Pilgrim.

“We would like to thank all of our colleagues for all they are doing to support each other and for continuing to care for patients during these difficult times. Thanks to all of their efforts the situation has improved slightly, but we are still managing a critical incident at this time.

“The public can help by ensuring they follow government guidelines to reduce the spread of Covid-19 and by ensuring they use the most appropriate NHS service for their condition.”

Mr Warman said on Saturday: “A large number of constituents have contacted me about the pressures Pilgrim is under due to an increase in Covid patients.

“I’ve been in very regular contact with the Chief Executive of ULHT, and I’m pleased to hear that as a result of the huge efforts of all the staff, the hospital has been able to move down from pressure escalation level 4 to level 3, meaning that the actions taken recently have improved the situation.

“These have included significant amounts of overtime from current staff and bank staff taking on extra shifts. The Trust has also offered a 30% uplift in hourly rates of pay as an incentive.

“Pilgrim now has 123 Covid patients and ULHT a total of 185. At the height of the first wave, the total was 104. I’m hugely grateful for all the work staff are doing in the unprecedented circumstances and will do all I can to make sure ULHT gets any support it requests.

“If you feel unwell please contact 111 or 999 as appropriate, and please remember that the best way to help protect our NHS as a whole is to stay at home, and follow the guidance on hands, face and space if you do have to go out.

“We will get through this faster if we follow the advice.”