Minor injuries unit will reopen at Stratford after Covid deep clean
THE minor injuries unit at Stratford Hospital will re-open in the coming months, much to the relief of residents, after it was temporarily closed during the first Covid lockdown.
The Herald first reported the sudden closure by South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust (SWIFT) in April last year when it said staff would be redeployed to help ease pressures, created by the pandemic, on other services. It was always meant to be a temporary move, but the closure left some concerned it would not re-open and would have meant possible trips to Warwick Hospital.
This week, Helen Lancaster, director of operations at SWIFT, said: “We are currently in the process of assessing what needs to be done to make the department Covid-secure and once the necessary work has been completed we will set a date for re-opening and inform the local community.”
Cllr Gill Cleeve, who is also a first responder, said Stratford should have an MIU – full stop.
“When I first heard about the temporary closure I was absolutely shocked as to where we were supposed to go and we had Covid too,” she said. “This week’s news is amazing – 100 per cent Stratford needs a minor injuries unit and I have had to use it as a parent myself.
“The minor injuries unit is vital, not just to the town but surrounding villages. It provides a brilliant service which has a personal touch. I’m not knocking Warwick, but I’ve got elderly relatives who are not keen on driving there.”
Facial masks, social distancing and sanitisation will be in place when the MIU opens, SWIFT confirmed.
Cllr Jenny Fradgley welcomed the news, but added a note of caution as the NHS is still facing huge pressures.
“I fully support the re-opening of the MIU as soon as the NHS can certify the deep clean and Covid safe status,” she said. “Bearing in mind how much pressure the NHS is under, I hope this can be achieved as soon as possible.
“Residents I have spoken to want the MIU here in the town and many would like an enhancement given that Stratford attracts – even under present conditions – many thousands of tourists a day.”