Rising Covid rates sees staff moved from town's NHS unit to hospital

Cromer and District HospitalPhoto by Mark Bullimore

Cromer and District HospitalPhoto by Mark Bullimore

A Norfolk hospital’s minor injuries unit is to close from Monday, so staff can be redeployed to Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) due to rising Covid-19 infections.

In a statement, NNUH’s NHS foundation trust said: "From Monday, staff based at the MIU in Mill Road, Cromer, will be redeployed to support the minor injuries and Emergency Department at NNUH where our teams are seeing Covid-19 infections and admissions continue to rise.

“We know this will be disappointing to North Norfolk patients who value the MIU service at Cromer. However, the Cromer MIU space will be used to maintain a low Covid-19 risk treatment area for surgical appointments and procedures.

“The service will be reopened as soon as the Covid-19 situation improves.”

Mayor of Cromer Richard Leeds said the news was disappointing, and that he hoped the unit would return to normal service soon.

Mayor Leeds said: “I appreciate the help that the staff at the minor injuries unit can give to Norwich, but the way the numbers are going up, you wonder if they’ll have enough space to look after people. The numbers are growing higher and higher.”

He added that he had found the number of people in Cromer over the New Year and Christmas period worrying.

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“It was disturbing, to say the least, because we’ve all been told to stay at home. You don’t have to travel from out of the area for a walk. You can do that locally,” he said.

“I know the figures are about two weeks behind, so I just hope we don’t get a hell of an increase in the next two weeks,” he said. 

Tim Adams, Norfolk county councillor for Cromer, said: “I can understand there’ll be some fears for people that do have need for the MIU unit.

"I’m certainly not alone in being a resident who’s made use of it, unfortunately, a few times, but I can understand in the current situation that they might need that clinical space.”

“It was probably a difficult decision for them, and probably one they spent a lot of time thinking about.” he added.

Emma Spagnola, North Norfolk district councillor, said: “I completely understand why it’s happening, but it’s concerning because of the locale and whether residents will have to go all the way to Norwich [with minor injuries].”

If you require urgent care, please contact NHS 111 by phone or online who will triage you and direct you to the most appropriate place for your healthcare needs.

The Norwich Walk-In centre, run by Norwich Practices Ltd, in Rouen Road, Norwich, is open from 7am to 9pm daily.

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