“In common with health systems across the UK, we are planning for an unprecedented increase in acute hospital activity resulting from Covid-19. As of 16th March 2020, we have been fortunate that no cases have been identified in the region. However, we anticipate that this situation will change rapidly and that our hospitals will need to adapt to manage large numbers of patients ill with the virus.
“Our teams need to focus on this change, on their own re-training and the reconfiguration of our services. I have therefore taken the decision to suspend all non urgent outpatient and inpatient activity at DGRI and the Galloway Community Hospital from 5.00pm today 17th March. A small number of critical services, such as renal dialysis, and cancer treatment and surgery, will continue as normal, but I am afraid that we simply cannot continue to provide our full range of clinical activity at this time. Please do not attend the hospital for appointments that are not related to these critical services. We will call every patient to confirm cancellations or to arrange for remote consultation using the NHS Near Me video conference technology.
“At the moment we are focussing this change on our acute hospital services, and other patient pathways such as psychiatry and psychology clinics will continue as normal. This will be kept under review and we may need to make changes here at short notice to adapt to fast changing circumstances.
“I am deeply sorry to have to make this announcement and I fully appreciate the inconvenience and distress that additional wait for our services can create. We will keep the situation under continuous review and will restart our full service model as soon as safely possible.”
Jeff Ace – Chief Executive, NHS Dumfries and Galloway