Coronavirus in Portsmouth: Cases increase as Queen Alexandra Hospital has no spare beds for non-Covid patients

Mask wearers in Palmerston Road, Southsea. Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 030721-23)Mask wearers in Palmerston Road, Southsea. Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 030721-23)
Mask wearers in Palmerston Road, Southsea. Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 030721-23)
NEARLY 60 people with Covid are being treated at Queen Alexandra Hospital – with no free adult beds left for non-Covid patients.

NHS figures show there were no free beds at all for non-Covid patients in the hospital as of Tuesday.

There were 872 non-Covid patients at QA Hospital in general and acute beds, and 52 Covid patients also in the same type of beds.

Six Covid patients were on mechanical ventilation.

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Four adult critical care beds were occupied by Covid patients, and 28 by non-Covid patients.

There were just 20 critical care beds and nine general beds free in the entire hospital on Tuesday – but these were not designated for patients who do not have Covid.

It comes as Covid cases in the area continue to increase and patients with flu are starting to appear at QA Hospital.

Jo York, managing director of NHS Portsmouth Clinical Commissioning Group, said: ‘We're working really closely with our delivery partners to manage demand and access to our front-line healthcare services as we head into winter, including investment into services and resources.

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‘We can all support the NHS and keeping well during winter by staying active, taking up the flu and Covid-19 jab/booster, and accessing the most appropriate healthcare service from the range available across the city, including NHS 111 online, pharmacies, GP practices, community and mental health programmes, minor injuries units or urgent treatment centres.’

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As of Thursday, the Hampshire County Council area saw the biggest increase in the number of cases in Britain among upper tier authority areas.

There were 8,224 new cases reported in the seven days to October 16.

Portsmouth ranked as having the 99th highest number of new cases, with 1,017 and a rate of 473.7 per 100,000 population.

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Hampshire had a rate of 592 - ranking 34th highest in Britain.

Helen Atkinson, Portsmouth City Council public health director, said: ‘There are still people in Portsmouth who've yet to have their first or second jab, so I would urge anyone who hasn’t yet taken up the offer to do so as soon as possible.

‘Getting the flu vaccine if you’re eligible is important this year, as we all mixed much less last winter and so our immunity will have lowered.

‘Getting coronavirus and the flu at the same time is possible and could make you very poorly - so getting both the Covid-19 booster and the flu vaccine this winter is the best protection for those eligible and for the wider community.’

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Around 75 per cent of people aged 12 or over in Portsmouth have now received a first vaccine, compared to nearly 86 per cent in England.

But government data shows the trickle of people now receiving a first jab in the city.

Just six received their first dose of vaccine on Sunday, October 10 – the lowest amount on record except for when none were given on Christmas Day, and down from the peak of 3,604 on March 20 this year.

Numbers have picked up since, with 196 first doses given on October 20.

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