On Sunday, 23 May 2021 Joseph Locker, Digital News Correspondent of the Nottingham Post, reported that the Nottingham NHS Trust Chief Executive has revealed the staggering impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the QMC and the City Hospital since the first case was recorded in February 2020.

NUH boss's message as staggering impact of Covid on trust is laid bare

1,200 people died of the virus at City Hospital and QMC

Nottingham's hospital trust has revealed the staggering impact of coronavirus on its services and the 'very difficult' events of the last year.

Nottingham University Hospitals, which runs both the Queen's Medical Centre and City Hospital, recorded its very first case of coronavirus on February 21 last year.

The NHS trust says Nottingham City Hospital first began to take on Covid-19 patients, based on learning from China, and the Queen's Medical Centre was designated as the non-Covid site.

However, the trust explained "the sheer patient numbers" meant the split proved unsustainable during the first wave which came after the March lockdown last year.

After a tasking year for staff and a very tragic one for many families, the trust has reflected on its Covid response up to April this year.

However the first "positive step" was made in the city's hospitals back at the end of March, when critical care beds taken up by Covid patients dropped for the first time in weeks.The trust revealed it had to increase its critical care beds by 200% of the normal capacity to cater for severely ill Covid patients, and more than 570 staff volunteered to help in this department during this period.

Speaking of the difficulties the city's hospitals faced, chief executive Tracy Taylor said: "The last year is certainly not one that we will forget in a hurry.

"Indeed, the coronavirus pandemic has been the biggest challenge that the NHS has faced since its inception. 

"Very sadly, more than 1,200 patients have died in our hospitals with Covid since March 2020. Our thoughts are with their family and friends, and the staff who cared for them in their final hours.

"We know that the pandemic has tested our staff, our resources and our local communities to the limit. However, it has also been a time that has allowed our Trust values (Trust, Empower,Ambitious, Mindful, Nurturing, United and Honest) to come to the fore."

After months of tireless work from the city's hospitals and the staff within them, the first Pfizer BioNTech vaccine jab was administered on December 8, marking the first step towards any sense of normality and hope.

Don Colley, 87, who once worked for the NHS in the boiler room of Highbury Hospital, was given his vaccination at the Queen's Medical Centre on the afternoon of December 8.

By February this year a total of 44, 000 people over 80 were vaccinated, around 87% of that age bracket.

Another 32,000 (86%) people aged 75-79 were vaccinated, as well as 33,000 (64%) of 70-74 and 78% of health and social care workers.

Some 15,704 NUH staff have also been vaccinated.

While the chief executive, Ms Taylor, sadly announced the deaths of more than 1,200 Covid patients at the city's hospitals, she also revealed more positively that 5,541 patients had been discharged following a stay with the virus.

And despite the challenges, maternity staff even managed to deliver 7,377 babies throughout the pandemic, with cleaning staff conducting 17,000 additional cleans of the hospitals since March to make sure everyone was as safe as could be.

Ms Taylor added: "Whilst we didn’t always get it right, our staff showed incredible resilience and did their best in very difficult circumstances, providing truly compassionate care and kindness to our patients and their families, as well as to each other. 

"We have worked across the boundaries between departments, divisions, clinical and non-clinical services and beyond our organisation with partners across Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, coming together in a united response.

"We have also benefited from huge support from our local communities too through donations of money, food, gifts and kind words. 

"I would like to send a genuine and heartfelt ‘thank you’ to all of our incredible teams across Team NUH for the part you have played."

NUH boss's message as staggering impact of Covid on trust is laid bare - Nottinghamshire Live