HOSPITALS in Lincolnshire have declared a critical incident following a surge in coronavirus patients.
United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust said its medics were now treating more Covid patients than they were in the first wave and intensive care units remain "extremely busy".
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On Monday night, there were 198 patients with coronavirus in the Lincoln and Boston hospitals along with staff shortages due to Covid infections and self-isolation, the Lincolnite reports.
The trust overseeing those hospitals has now declared the situation critical.
Mark Brassington, Deputy Chief Executive at ULHT, said: “We are sorry for the waits that our patients have faced yesterday and overnight.
“The number of inpatients who have been confirmed as having COVID-19 across our sites remains higher than in wave one and we remain extremely busy across our wards and intensive care units."
He added that hospitals were facing "challenges with staffing due to a lack of availability of colleagues due to a number of factors".
The number of inpatients who have been confirmed as having COVID-19 across our sites remains higher than in wave one and we remain extremely busy across our wards and intensive care units.
“We would like to thank all of our colleagues for all they are doing to support each other and for continuing to care for patients during these difficult times," he said.
The United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust consists of County Hospital Louth, Pilgrim Hospital Boston, Grantham and District Hospital and Lincoln County Hospital.
Patients are being advised to continue to attend appointments unless contacted directly.
Visiting at all of ULHT’s hospitals was suspended in November last year and the trust said the current visitor restrictions remain in place.
It comes as hospital admissions across the country surge, with the NHS on course to collapse “within three weeks”.
Essex was last week forced to call in the Army after declaring a major incident with patients being treated in the back of ambulances at crippled hospitals.
And there are now a record 26,626 virus patients in England’s hospitals, 30 per cent higher than one week before.
It’s double a month ago when there were 12,987 on December 4.
The figure is 33 per cent higher than the spring peak of 18,974 on April 12, when Britain was considered to be battling the most severe point of the pandemic when some 900 people were dying per day.
NHS Providers chief executive Chris Hopson said patients were being admitted to hospital at an “alarming rate”.
He said: “There are almost 9,000 more Covid patients in hospital beds – the equivalent of nearly 18 hospitals – than there was on Christmas Day, just 10 days ago. We know that number is going to continue to rise over the next few weeks.”
He added the announcement of a lockdown was the “only option to save lives”, as well as ensuring the NHS can still provide patients with care.
The country was plunged into another lockdown last night, as experts warned of worse to come.
Addressing the nation yesterday, Boris Johnson said: “Our hospitals are under more pressure from Covid than at any time since the start of the pandemic.
“In England alone, the number of Covid patients has increased by nearly a third in the last week to almost 27,000.
“That number is 40 per cent higher than the first peak in April.”
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