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Weston Hospital Closed due to COVID19

Posted on 31st May, 2020


UPDATE 30 JUN 20: Councillor hits out at Prime Minister’s claims Weston was in ‘local lockdown’ (PDF)

  • "North Somerset Council‘s deputy leader [Mike Bell] has said the Prime Minister’s repeated claims Weston is in a local lockdown are ‘damaging. The Prime Minister [said] : “... we have seen across the country when there are outbreaks, for instance in Weston ...' Health Secretary Matt Hancock also referred to a lockdown in Weston during a Government coronavirus briefing on June 5.
  • Cllr Bell said, " It’s incredibly frustrating that the Prime Minister and Government continue to spin this line that Weston went into ‘local lockdown ...  We did not have a local lockdown, we were not advised to have a local lockdown ...“It wasn’t a lockdown and the Government needs to stop saying it was"

UPDATE 18 JUN 20: Weston General Hospital is now fully open to new patients 


UPDATE 12 JUN 20: NHS waiting list 'could hit 10 million this year' 


UPDATE 05 JUN 20: Weston Hospital to reopen gradually after outbreak  

"We've got good evidence that there are no new infections and that tells us the measures put in place to limit cross infection in the hospital have worked. "We are now testing all staff again and are aiming to start getting services back again next week."

UPDATE 04 JUN 20: Weston hospital staff 'unknowingly spread virus

"A coronavirus outbreak at Weston General Hospital was caused by staff who did not know they had the virus, according to the town's MP. Conservative MP John Penrose said health chiefs told him it "did not come from anywhere else". He said: "Some staff who did not know they had the virus were wandering around without any symptoms and without realising it, were spreading it."

Monday 01 JUN 20: Weston General Hospital retests inpatients 

"We will retest all our inpatients again. We will also repeat testing of all staff. The results from this will indicate whether the staff working in the hospital are remaining free of infection ... The trust would not say when the results of the second round of testing would be released."


Weston General Hospital closed this Monday 25 May 2020 due to a COVID19 spike. Last month, 01 Apr 20, Weston Area Health NHS Trust merged with University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, stating "Uniting the Trusts increases our diversity, capacity and resilience, ... to create an even better and stronger organisation for the future.


Our Local MP, John Penrose, said "Everyone was astonished by the number of staff who were infected, but not showing symptoms. Closing the Hospital to new admissions to protect patients and staff was absolutely the right decision" Also, "...There's a temporary A&E outside, so that continues, & inpatients will go to Taunton or Bristol until we reopen"... An article quotes Penrose MP as saying, "the hospital was having a ‘deep clean’ after speaking to health chiefs." and a "Dr Oldfield said ...  there are ‘appropriate levels’ of personal protective equipment (PPE) available ... "


It's unclear what Bleadon Parish Council have to say on the matter as they have not updated their website. [This was also absent from BPC's 08 June 20 Agenda]


Sunday 31 MAY 20: Six per cent of staff at hospital test positive for coronavirus

"University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust, which run the hospital, carried out testing on the majority of the 1,700 staff after an outbreak of the virus at the hospital. Results have shown that approximately six per cent of the staff group are asymptomatic and infected."

Saturday 30 MAY 20: Lack of tests for medics 'caused local Covid outbreaks

"Weston-super-Mare's general hospital has closed to new admissions in part due to tests on all staff showing 100 of them were infected"


BBC News broadcast on Hospital Closure

Friday 29 MAY 20: John on BBC Radio to discuss Weston Hospital and Local Lockdowns




Friday 29 MAY 20: Source of coronavirus outbreak at Weston General Hospital discovered - reports  

"BBC health correspondent Matthew Hill said: "A senior source from Public Health England has informed me that their real concern centres around an accommodation block for staff behind the hospital where staff were mingling - they were not necessarily able to adhere to social distancing.

but there is real concern that nurses working here also work in the community and they may have spread the virus to elderly residents there. "They will now be testing residents of care homes locally." (See also Staff not tested at 62% of care homes)

Thursday 28 MAY 20: How long Weston General Hospital is set to be closed as anger at management grows: 

"UHBW chief executive Robert Woolley told the BBC the 40 per cent figure for staff who tested positive last week was a sample of the most high-risk workers in "the Covid-infectious wards”. He added: “We are segregating patients into those confirmed positive, those confirmed negative, and this batch in the middle where they might have symptoms and are shown not to have Covid-19, or they have no symptoms at all but when tested are infectious." 

Wednesday 27 MAY 20 CEO of Weston General speaks out for first time about 'complex' situation as hospital remains in coronavirus shutdown

"The NHS boss has today (Wednesday, May 27) said the situation is "complex" and says he does not yet know when he will be able to reopen the hospital, adding that it will be at least a week or "possible longer" before it can welcome new patients again. He also said it is currently unclear how the outbreak at the hospital occurred and what it means for the wider Weston-super-Mare community, but added that the hospital was working with other local agencies to get a clearer picture of the situation."

Tuesday 26 MAY 20: Weston General Hospital bosses won’t say how many people have died there with coronavirs

"The trust behind Weston General Hospital has not revealed its Covid-19 death toll amid a spike in cases ... We asked the trust yesterday morning for the number of deaths at Weston General and we have repeatedly requested a response, but UHBW is yet to provide one ... We have asked UHBW for clarification on whether deaths are now being recorded under the merged trust name."

Monday 25 MAY 20: Coronavirus: Weston General Hospital halts admissions  

"Weston General Hospital implemented the temporary measures, which extend to its A&E department, at 08:00 BST to "maintain patient and staff safety". Its NHS trust described it as a "precautionary measure" and arrangements have been made for new patients to be treated elsewhere"

"a leaked memo sent out to local NHS staff in the South West late on Sunday (May 24) stating that testing of Weston General Hospital staff without symptoms revealed "40 per cent as COVID-19 positive". Mr Woolley said: "The figure of course is taken out of context, because it was 40 per cent of 10 per cent of the most high risk staff working in the COVID-19 infectious wards."

02 APR 20: University Hospitals Bristol & Weston merger complete  

Uniting the Trusts increases our diversity, capacity and resilience, and provides a unique opportunity to bring together the things that make both the Weston and Bristol hospitals great places to work and to receive care, in order to create an even better and stronger organisation for the future."


See 27 SEP 19: "Campaign group to demonstrate against Weston hospital plans"


See 31 JAN 18: Weston A&E closure: Hospital trusts reveal merger plan 


See 04 JUL 17: Weston Hospital AE Services Reduced  


Sunday 31 MAY 20: Staff not tested at 62% of care homes 

"Almost two-thirds of care homes have not tested any staff for the coronavirus, new research reveals. The data indicates the government remains a long way off its May 15 promise to test every resident and staff member in care homes by this week."

See BOB Coronavirus Information page 

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