RDE declares crisis

Well, we didn’t see that one coming did we – after more than 200 of our community beds were closed.

How on earth do you “prioritise patients in currently in your care” when emergencies happen and when your next nearest large hospitals are 40-90 miles away and having their own crises?

Here’s an idea: have community hospitals and move dying, improving or rehabilitation patients closer to their homes, freeing up acute beds!

“The severity of today’s weather has resulted in the Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital declaring a status of ‘internal critical incident’.

The warning means that care is being prioritised to patients already in its care, and it is calling on all available staff to come in to work.

Pete Adey, RD&E chief operating officer, said: “Due to the adverse weather conditions the trust, earlier today, declared an internal critical incident. This means we are diverting all available staff and resources to provide care for the patients who are in the hospital and receiving care from our community teams.

“We are asking staff within walking distance of the RD&E’s main Wonford site to come in and provide help if it is safe for them to do so.

“As we expect the weather conditions to continue, our focus for the next 24 hours is to provide urgent and emergency services and to look after the patients already in our care.

“In view of the treacherous driving conditions, patients should only attend their booked appointments if it is safe to do so. Appointments for all of the patients who cannot reach the hospital and those we have needed to postpone in light of the weather conditions will be rescheduled as soon as possible.”

The RD&E advised Honiton Minor Injuries Unit will reopen at 9am tomorrow.

Tiverton and Exmouth MIUs are open as normal at this time but may be subject to change. Regular updates will be provided.

Mr Adey continued: “We sincerely thank the public for their help and support at this challenging time and pay tribute to our staff who are working incredibly hard to keep our essential urgent and emergency services running.”