Face covering still required at Leicestershire healthcare sites
Patients and visitors at GP surgeries, hospitals and vaccinations sites in Leicestershire and Rutland are still required to wear face coverings despite today’s (Monday’s) national relaxation of most coronavirus restrictions.
NHS bosses in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland (LLR) are keen to ensure people continue to protect themselves and others in healthcare settings.
Caroline Trevithick, chief nurse for the three LLR Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), said: “Although most covid restrictions have now ended in the community, we need to take extra precautions.
“Your GP practice is working hard for you and wants to keep you safe and confident when attending the surgery, and this is also about protecting
“When you visit your GP practice, you can help keep our staff and our most vulnerable patients safe by continuing to follow the simple precautions that we are all now familiar with.
“You must wear a mask or face covering, sanitise your hands and maintain social distancing.”
Avinash Hiremath, medical director of Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT), which manages Melton Mowbray Hospital among other county hospitals, said: “It is important for everyone to know that the guidance for healthcare settings is not the same as it is for our outside, social or home lives.
“We care for vulnerable and unwell people in close contact.
“It is our responsibility as health and care professionals to keep everyone safe and reduce transmissions, and that includes visitors abiding by our rules when they come into our sites.
“The pandemic is not over. Cases across the UK are currently rising, as are hospitalisations. We must all act carefully to manage the risks to ourselves and others.”
Until further notice, there is no change at LPT or Leicester’s Hospitals to the requirements for face coverings and mask-wearing, social distancing including room or site capacity, PPE, hand washing and other infection prevention and control measures for staff and visitors.
Coronavirus cases are rising rapidly in the Melton borough, according to latest government figures, with 276 reported in the week to July 12, an increase of 170 on the previous week.
Melton’s infection rate of 539 per 100,000 population is well above the England national average of 321.
Around seven in 10 adults are now fully vaccinated against the virus, which should prevent more of those who test positive from being hospitalised or falling seriously ill.
Andrew Furlong, medical director at Leicester’s Hospitals, said: “We care for some of the sickest and most vulnerable patients in the city and county so it’s vital we do all we can to protect them.
“There will be no change in our hospitals after 19 July – if you are entering our hospitals you will need to wear a face covering and maintain social distancing.
“By following the rules, you can play an important role in keeping our patients, staff and local community safe.”
The local NHS is also asking everyone aged 18 or over to make sure they are fully vaccinated, with two vaccine doses.
Mrs Trevithick added: “The vaccine is the best defence we have against the Covid-19 virus and you will not only protect yourself, but you’ll be helping us to reduce the spread of the virus.
“There is a range of options for getting the vaccine, including drop-in clinics taking place across LLR up to the end of July. Please don’t delay having your vaccine.”