At the end of February, the Friends raised a petition to Keep Urgent and Minor Treatment in Burnham -on-Sea. This was to canvass opinions as the CCG had indicated the Minor Injuries units could be closed down in favour of fewer Urgent Treatment Centres.
The results of that Petition are now in and we have sent off all the files containing the 6,300 signatures and comments to the CCG. All the original Paper Copies have been sent using the CCG's Freepost Service. A copy has also been sent to James Heappey who has already stated publicly that he intends to fight hard to retain the service in Burnham. We would like to thank burnhamonsea.com for bringing this to everyone's notice and for posting the link to the online part of the Petition which helped us secure 3,691 of those signatures.
You might think that with the advent of Coronavirus that would be the end of it but not a bit of it. The Fit For My Future Team are continuing to promote the engagement on community health and care services online and through adverts in local newspapers and journals and to log all the feedback received. They will do so until 12 April when the engagement programme closes. I understand that everything will then be put on hold until we get back to normal.
We need everyone to rally round and support our hospital and its staff more than ever. Can you imagine at a time like this not having this facility in Burnham. Many of the comments that came back to us said that people wanted to keep the facility to help relieve the continuous pressure on our overstretched GP services.
When this Pandemic has finished, Burnham tourism will have to recover and it is likely that UK vacations will be much in vogue, removal of the MIU could influence tourists’ decisions. A financial benefit and employment for the Town could also be reduced, as a result.
It is interesting that on last night's BBC West News that the North Somerset Trust are putting more emphasis on their MIU's and asking people with Minor injuries to go to them rather than the main hospitals!
The Friends Committee held its last meeting on the 2nd March and will not meet again, in person, until we have the all clear. We are now looking at having on-line meetings and are very fortunate to have two members who understand the technology and will be able to guide us.
In the meantime we will be able to consider any request for help from Hospital Staff or the Care in the community Staff very quickly using our tried and tested on-line voting system.
We are helping the Staff with very simple gestures. Last week we supplied boxes of Thornton’s' Chocolates to be shared amongst them all and this week I have arranged a delivery of five trays of different types of cakes with the help of Steve at ‘Maiseys' Bakery’.
With Easter coming up we have already put in place the facility for any patient within the hospital to be able to have an Easter Gift and as I write I am considering how we can also make sure that the Staff know that everyone in the community are thinking of them.
Please help our NHS by staying home where it is possible and Stay Well.
Bernard Spilsbury: Chairman