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Featured Wednesday, Apr 15 2020

Temporary suspension of minor injury and illness services at St Marks

The minor illness and injury unit at St Marks Hospital, Maidenhead, is to be temporarily suspended as part of the national effort to combat Covid-19 (coronavirus).

In recent weeks local health services have changed the way they work in order to support the national effort to halt the spread and the impact of the virus.

Hospitals have postponed elective surgery, GPs have moved to a phone or online initial appointment system and many other services are operating remotely – all in line with national guidance.

Many NHS staff have been redeployed into new, temporary roles, to increase the response to Covid-19 and to support those treating the most seriously ill patients.

The impact of the virus and the national lockdown – with most people now staying at home as instructed – has resulted in attendances at the minor injury unit at St Mark’s Hospital, in Maidenhead, falling by 74 per cent.

In order to make the best use of resources, local NHS commissioners have taken the decision to suspend the minor illness and injury unit at St Marks for the remainder of the pandemic. This will allow clinicians from the unit to be redeployed to where their skills can be put to the best use.

Patients will still be able to access treatment for minor ailments via their GP surgery, which they can access by phone or online consultations. Further information is available on their practice website and help is also available via the NHS111 service, by dialling 111 or visiting: www.111.nhs.uk.

Anybody needing treatment for injuries such fractures should still attend their local Accident and Emergency unit in the normal way (Wexham Park Hospital, Slough, Frimley Park Hospital, Frimley, or the Royal Berkshire Hospital, Reading)

The change will mean some patients will have to travel further for treatment for fractures. However, this is a temporary measure aimed at making the best use of valuable clinical expertise and resources during extraordinary times.

NHS East Berkshire Clinical Commissioning Group, which plans and funds the majority of health services provided to local people, will continue to monitor the situation and will work with local people, the local authority, NHS England and other partners to ensure that East Berkshire residents who use St Marks will continue to receive the services they need.

The CCG would like to thank local people for their understanding while these changes are in place and also for their continued support to the lockdown measures in order to stop the spread of the virus.