Monday, 23rd March 2020 is a date which will live in infamy, to borrow a phrase from former US President Franklin D Roosevelt.
It’s the day when the UK went into the first national lockdown in a bid to control the spread of coronavirus.
While President Roosevelt’s Infamy speech signalled United States’ involvement in World War Two following Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbour; it seems appropriate to cite now as we find ourselves fighting a war of a different kind.
I am, of course, talking about the battle against coronavirus.
More than seven months have passed since Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the first country-wide lockdown and, with England just a few days into a national four-week lockdown to combat the recent surge in coronavirus cases, it’s clear that the fight against coronavirus is far from over.
It’s no great secret that we are facing one of our toughest ever winters in the coming months. This is why I wanted to send a message of thanks and encouragement to all health and care staff across Humber, Coast and Vale.
Thanks to your hard work and commitment throughout this year, our hospitals, GP surgeries and other health and care facilities and the services they provide have adapted in response to the pandemic. See our Understanding our Response to Covid-19 report for more details
In doing so you have continued to prioritise the safety of patients and staff, while remaining fully committed to providing the best possible service to patients within the constraints that coronavirus has placed upon you. That is some achievement!
I know it has been an especially exhausting year for those who work within the regional health and care system and the challenges that lie ahead will undoubtedly prove to be every bit as difficult as the those we’ve encountered so far during the pandemic.
But as we gear up for an especially testing winter, as we contend with coronavirus on top of the usual winter pressures, it’s important to recognise that what you’ve achieved this year in responding to the threat of coronavirus has been outstanding.
Furthermore I’m confident that thanks to everyone’s efforts we have well developed plans in place to cope with future rises in coronavirus cases and clinical prioritisation work has been undertaken by our Clinical Lead, Dr Nigel Wells, and colleagues to ensure we are prepared for the months that lie ahead.
I know it’s easier said than done in times like these, but please take the time to look after yourselves with the same care and attention as you do your patients.
You’re all doing a wonderful job and by working together across the Humber, Coast and Vale health and care system we will win the war against coronavirus.