Mildmay hospital gets ready to treat homeless Covid-19 patients
PUBLISHED: 14:22 30 March 2020 | UPDATED: 17:55 31 March 2020
An east London hospital faced with closure will help care for homeless people recovering from coronavirus – as well as those with acute HIV-related conditions
Mildmay, London’s only specialist HIV/AIDS hospital, is working to ease the burden on overstretched NHS hospitals by taking on patients and freeing up beds during the pandemic.
Earlier this month, homelessness support groups and Islington Council called on the government to “divert emergency funding” to the hospital so it care for rough sleepers who catch the virus.
And the hospital now looks set to treat treating homeless Covid-19 patients that are recovering and close to being asymptomatic.
Mildmay’s chief exec, Geoff Coleman has been reassured by NHS England that funding will be made available.
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But the demand for beds is so urgent, Mildmay is side-stepping normal procedures and admitting patients before receiving said funding.
Earlier this month Mr Coleman told the Gazette the hospital has 12 empty rooms with beds where rough sleepers can self-isolate in.
Mildmay needs £5million to run on full capacity for another year - but hospital chiefs say that government funding of between £1.5million to £2.5m could keep it open for six months.
Chris Hopson, chief exec of NHS providers says hospitals in London are seeing a ‘continuous tsunami’ of ill patients. Extra capacity, like the new NHS Nightingale Hospital, is being brought in but health chiefs fear it will be used up “very quickly.
Health and Social Care secretary Matt Hancock said: “In these extraordinary times, it’s essential we all pull together as part of the national effort to protect the most vulnerable, reduce pressures on our NHS and care system and save lives.”
Or to find groups, networks and organisations in Hackney providing support during the Coronavirus lockdown visit our There With You Essential List.
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