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Changes to outpatient services at UHMBT due to COVID-19 pandemic

Furness General Hospital

University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust (UHMBT) is delivering outpatient services differently to keep patients and staff safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Trust’s Outpatient Departments at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary (RLI), Westmorland General Hospital (WGH) in Kendal and Furness General Hospital (FGH) have introduced new ways of working as have the Trust’s two health centres at Queen Victoria Hospital in Morecambe and Ulverston Community Health Centre.

UHMBT’s Outpatient sites remain open however, they will offer a limited service. Wherever possible, Outpatient appointments and conversations will be held over the phone or through video links to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

In order to assist patients and families with any questions or concerns, the Trust has produced a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) relating to the COVID-19 situation. The FAQs are on the UHMBT website and will be updated regularly with the latest information and guidance on Outpatient services.

Subjects dealt with in the FAQs include appointment cancellations, what to do regarding appointment letters, issues relating to phone numbers and alterations to appointment times. The FAQs also provide guidance for people with hearing, speech and or language concerns.

‘Foluke Ajayi, Chief Operating Officer for UHMBT, said: “Our Outpatient appointments will be delivered in new ways while we are managing the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Unfortunately we have had to cancel some appointments and other patients have been transferred to telephone appointments.

“From Monday 30 March we will see a mix of patients who are required to attend an appointment in person and some other urgent patients will receive a telephone consultation. This will be determined by the patient’s clinician. Patients who do not fall into this category will have their existing appointment postponed.

“We wish to apologise to our patients and their families for any disruption but, as the current situation is unprecedented, we felt it was imperative to reorganise our Outpatient services to keep as many people as possible safe and well.

“We are grateful for the understanding, patience and cooperation of our patients and our staff as we are working through this challenging time.”

The Outpatient COVID-19 FAQs can be found on the UHMBT website at: https://www.uhmb.nhs.uk/visiting-our-hospitals/outpatients

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