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Take part in one-minute survey on how hospitals should tackle surgery during pandemic

Written by: Andrew Merrell | Posted 20 June 2020 10:40

Take part in one-minute survey on how hospitals should tackle surgery during pandemic

Restore Emergency at Cheltenham General Hospital (REACH) is launching 'a crucial and timely survey' to gather patients’ views on planned surgery and patient information during the COVID 19 Crisis.

REACH is concerned vulnerable patients needing emergency treatment are being sent to the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, where COVID 19 cases are also being dealt with.

The pressure group was set up to restore a full accident and emergency unit at Cheltenham General Hospital.

Michael Ratcliffe, chairman of REACH, member of Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce member and managing director of Ratcliffe Insurance Brokers, said: “Here in Gloucestershire, Cheltenham General Hospital A&E has temporarily become a minor injuries unit with all other emergencies directed towards Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.

"The trust has stated that this will ensure that Cheltenham General is a 'covid free' or 'covid protected' hospital, where planned surgery can occur with minimal risk of covid infection.

"With planned surgery, steps can be taken to ensure patients are covid free, but patients admitted through emergency departments are assumed to be potentially covid positive, pending covid swab test results.”

“Given the potential risk of COVID transmission between emergency and planned surgical patients we were surprised to learn that planned surgery patients with the highest risk of serious harm from COVID will continue to have operations at Gloucestershire Royal. It was this fact that first sparked the idea of the survey.

“We are encouraging as many people as possible to take part in this survey, both from within Gloucestershire and other parts of the UK. We very much hope that this will provide invaluable insight into patients’ views on planned surgery during COVID 19 and the information they receive.”

The survey can be found here: Reach surgery survey.

REACH has also produced a document titled “Restarting planned surgery in the COVID 19 era and important information for all patients on hospital waiting lists” which respondents are encouraged to read before completing the survey.