NHS Nightingale Hospital Bristol formally moves into standby

Media Relations Team, 30 June 2020

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The outside of the University of the West of England conference centre, which has a large sign reading "NHS Nightingale Hospital Bristol".

At the end of June 2020 the NHS Nightingale Hospital Bristol will formally move into a standby mode. The hospital, situated at UWE Bristol’s Frenchay campus, currently provides additional dedicated Covid19 intensive care beds for the Severn critical care network, acting as an insurance policy for the existing hospital network – providing support to hospitals from Gloucester to Yeovil and Taunton to Swindon.

Marie-Noelle Orzel, Chief Officer, NHS Nightingale Hospital Bristol, said:

"We have always said that we hope our hospital is never needed. To date, thanks to the hard work of NHS colleagues in the region and large numbers of people following the expert advice and guidance, there has been no need to use our hospital.

“Moving our hospital into a standby mode means that we remain ready and waiting for when we are needed but are able to return staff and resources to other services and hospitals for the time being. This ensures that we are able to best use our resources to support our Severn region critical care network to care for current patients.”

Mr Tim Whittlestone, Medical Director, NHS Nightingale Hospital Bristol, said:

“Our mission remains to save lives, provide hope and enhance and support critical care capacity across our Severn region. At present there is sufficient critical care capacity within our region which means that, for the time being, it is appropriate that our hospital will move into a standby mode. As and when we are needed, we will stand up to provide care with compassion to critically ill people with Covid19.

“We are actively discussing with our NHS colleagues across the region how we can best use our facilities during this standby period to support their clinical and non-clinical work. Our focus is on making the best use of our resources for the benefit of all.”

Marie-Noelle Orzel added:

“In the meantime, we would like to share our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to everyone who has worked with us to create and maintain our hospital, not just our NHS staff but our hosts at the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol), our contractors and providers, our army and Ministry of Defence colleagues, volunteers and all other partners.”

Professor Steve West, Vice-Chancellor of UWE Bristol, said:

“Although we hoped it would never be required, the fact that we have been host to such an important part of the UK's fight against Covid19 is a source of great pride to our staff and students. The NHS have our full support for this next phase, and we will continue to work very closely with NHS colleagues across the region to determine how the facility will change and adapt for any future use.”

NHS Nightingale Hospital Bristol is run by North Bristol NHS Trust. 

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