Hospital ‘crisis plans drawn up over Covid-related staff shortages’ - and London is worst hit

·2-min read
London has been the hardest hit with Covid-related absences  (Getty Images)
London has been the hardest hit with Covid-related absences (Getty Images)

Hospitals have put battle plans in place as Covid-related staff shortages takes its toll on the wards - and London is the worst hit.

Latest NHS figures show England’s Covid-related absences soared from 12,240 to 18,829 between December 12 and December 19.

London has been the hardest hit with Covid-related absences as the biggest trust in the country St Barts saw absences increase from 597 to 864 in recent days.

Alistair Chesser, medical director of the Barts Health NHS Trust, told The Mirror: “We have plans in place to redeploy staff in the coming weeks should we need to.”

Professor Tim Orchard, chief executive of Imperial College in London, also informed the publication that staff were being moved temporarily to put support in the hospitals facing “challenges” with rising absences.

It comes as NHS England revealed there were more than 1.5million Covid vaccine slots available from now until January 3.

Boris Johnson is understood to fighting to avoid implementing tougher Covid restrictions in the new year.

He has so far resisted putting restrictions in place while Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales all enforced social mixing rules.

Meanwhile, unions have warned schools have been drawing up crisis plans to send whole year groups home and prioritise face-to-face teaching for some of its key years.

But it is believed schools will be kept open in January, a vital time in the school year for teenagers taking mock exams.

It was reported Mr Johnson told Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi that he is “absolutely determined” to keep schools open after children have been off for the Christmas holidays.

Latest Government figures showed there were 122,186 new Covid infections in the UK on Christmas Eve in another grim milestone.

There was no update on Coronavirus case figures on Christmas day and Boxing day.

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