MANY NHS services across Bucks are being restored as health bosses guide the county’s hospitals through the next phase of their response to covid-19.

Over the past few months, those battling coronavirus have been doctors’ top priority, but an update from Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust revealed several services are being brought back following delays to procedures and appointments caused by the pandemic.

READ MORE: Major academy expansion means hundreds more students will study at this school

This means the Trust’s seven Bucks hospitals will be changing the way services are delivered in order to keep patients safe by making sure healthcare professionals use protective equipment and by controlling the number of people coming in for appointments.

Those with the greatest clinical need will be prioritised, meaning some patients may still see longer waiting times.

Service updates include:

  • There will be an increase the number of face-to-face outpatient clinics for those that need them at Amersham, Brookside and Buckingham Community Hospitals.
  • The Community Assessment and Treatment Service has started running again at Amersham.
  • Cancer services across the Trust are delivering all urgent work, including surgery, and accepting referrals.
  • Outpatient children’s services are continuing, using non-face-to-face appointments where possible, and inviting patients in when appropriate.

Maternity services at Stoke Mandeville Hospital are operating as normal, while Wycombe Birthing Centre is currently open for prenatal and antenatal appointments and will reopen for births from September.

Neil Macdonald, chief executive of Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, said: “As I’m sure everyone appreciates, the last few months have been challenging for our hospital and community services.

READ MORE: Mutilated deer dumped in residential car park

“Dealing with the coronavirus and helping anyone requiring urgent treatment for their illnesses or conditions has been our top priority and we are incredibly grateful for the support and understanding we have had from the public, especially those waiting for appointments.

“Now, as we move into phase two of our coronavirus response, we are prioritising those in the greatest clinical need and restoring services in a careful, phased way, so that we can ensure we continue to observe social distancing and prevent the spread of infection.

“We are still treating patients for coronavirus, and we will continue to see more cases over the coming weeks and months.”

Dr Tina Kenny, medical director for Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, added: “We understand how difficult a time this has been for patients who have had appointments or treatments delayed because of the pandemic and are grateful for the support they have shown their NHS.

“If anyone who is waiting to be seen should experience a worsening of their symptoms we would urge them to please contact the appropriate hospital team for advice as soon as possible – contact information should be on any appointment paperwork you have.

READ MORE: Wycombe celebrate promotion to the Championship

“We can then judge whether their situation has become more urgent and make sure they get the right care.

“Patients with other health concerns should continue to use our services. Whether you are experiencing new symptoms or are living with long-term conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease.

“Over the coming weeks, patients will be notified if their appointments are being rescheduled or carried out in a different way. This will probably be the case for many people, and if you are invited for a hospital appointment, please make every effort to attend.”