Nuffield Health, the UK’s largest healthcare charity, is making 30 hospitals across England available to NHS trusts following discussions with NHS England about how independent hospitals can support NHS patients in its efforts against the coronavirus (Covid-19).
Conversations about timings between Nuffield Health and NHS England are ongoing and it’s possible that three of their hospitals may be utilised to provide cancer care to NHS patients with the other 27 hospitals focussed on Covid-19 and non-Covid-19 patient care. They have also offered support with clinicians, support services and clinical equipment such as ventilators. Access to their 14 nurseries is also available for NHS and key workers to relieve the strain on employees and their families. Nuffield Health will be reimbursed at cost meaning no profit will be made and it will be audited by external auditors.
Chief Executive, Steve Gray, explains: “This is an unprecedented time, as the UK’s largest healthcare charity we have a huge role to play in supporting the NHS patients in our local communities across the nation. We, alongside other independent hospital providers, have been in discussions with the NHS about how we can support the NHS. This is likely to be for a minimum of three months while the coronavirus (Covid-19) situation continues to require our support.”
Support is centred around the provision of pathways for patients with specific conditions, including coronavirus (Covid-19), medical step down, urgent elective and cancer care. They are also reviewing how they can utilise their network of clinical employees, physiologists, physiotherapists, and personal trainers to offer further support in this area.
Medical and Charity Director, Dr Davina Deniszczyc, adds: “We are in a unique position to care for NHS patients clinically, physically and mentally. We are here to help those affected by the Covid-19 (coronavirus), cancer and other health conditions, and ease the strain on our incredible NHS.
“We are committed to supporting regional NHS trusts and local communities across the nation in any way we can. As part of this, we are looking at how we can help the more vulnerable people in our communities and supporting parents to keep their children active while schools are closed through extending our flagship programmes at no cost. We are also offering online fitness classes and emotional wellbeing guidance to keep people fit and emotionally resilient at this time.”