NHS workers showed the lengths they were willing to go to look after patients during the unprecedented weather Norfolk received last week.
In North Norfolk where rural villages were totally cut off, two farmers from Stokesby and Coltishall helped the Acle Medical Centre deliver medication in their tractors and local Ludham farmers drove several GPs round the area so that they could continue to see patients in their own home.
GPs worked from different bases to ensure patients from across Norfolk were seen, Dr Noble from Acle Surgery was stranded in Stalham and offered his services to Stalham Staithe Surgery, a Nurse from Acle surgery who was stuck in her home village worked at the Ludham surgery and three Thetford practices worked together which allowed them to see each other’s patients in urgent cases or emergencies.
Several GPs had to source accommodation to ensure they were able to continue serving their patients, Dr Toomey from Reepham surgery, Dr Dun from Orchard Surgery and medical staff at Mundesley practice all stayed locally overnight and Lyndsey Wayte, Operations Manager at Mundesley Surgery even stayed at the surgery overnight to ensure she was able to reach the practice the next day.
GPs from across Norfolk utilised mobile working with both Acle Medical Practice and Harleston Medical Practice triaging and treating patients over the phone and Heathgate Medical Practice working with 111 to speak and treat patients.
Tee Randall, Practice Manager at Acle Medical Practice in Norfolk, said: “Our patients are our first priority and colleagues in primary care will always do whatever they can to ensure they continue to see patients whatever the weather whether this is changing working locations, walking miles or taking extended journeys to see and treat patients.”
Antek Lejk, Chief Officer of North Norfolk NHS Clinical Commissioning Group and NHS South Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group added: “NHS staff consistently go above and beyond for their patients but the extraordinary weather last week brought out the best in everyone. These are fantastic examples of how both primary care colleagues and the local community worked together to overcome adversity for the benefit of patients.”