Covid patients told to leave hospitals by health chief so they can free up beds

A chief medical officer has pleaded with families to bring loved ones with Covid home from hospital, as almost every hospital in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight are full

Published

A chief medical officer has called on families to accept loved ones home from hospital even if they are Covid positive as health services face a “perfect storm”.

Dr Derek Sandeman, chief medical officer for Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System, made his plea as he reported that almost every hospital in the two counties was full.

And the number of people with Covid being cared for in hospitals across the area was 650 – more than 2.5 times higher than in early January.

Dr Sandeman spoke about freeing up hospital beds: "please help staff to help get them [patients] home quickly when they are well enough – even if they are still testing positive for Covid."
Dr Sandeman spoke about freeing up hospital beds: "please help staff to help get them [patients] home quickly when they are well enough – even if they are still testing positive for Covid."
File photo dated 21/12/2021 of a nurse puts on PPE in a ward for Covid patients. Issue date: Wednesday March 30, 2022.
File photo dated 21/12/2021 of a nurse puts on PPE in a ward for Covid patients. Issue date: Wednesday March 30, 2022.

He also said that 2,800 staff working for local NHS organisations were off sick, with half of these absences because of Covid-19.

Dr Sandeman said: “People working across health and care in Hampshire and Isle of Wight continue to go above and beyond the call of duty to give their patients safe care.

“With staff sickness rates well above average, rising cases of Covid-19 and very high numbers of people needing treatment, we face a perfect storm – but there are some very specific ways in which people can help the frontline NHS and care teams.

“If you have a loved one who is in hospital, please help staff to help get them home quickly when they are well enough – even if they are still testing positive for Covid.

“That is enormously important to help us make beds available for those in greatest need.”