Coronavirus numbers at Chelsea and Westminster hospital “not as high” considering rise in infections in October

By Owen Sheppard, Local Democracy Reporter

There are 27 patients at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital receiving treatment for Covid-19, its chief executive has said.

In a board meeting held on Wednesday, Lesley Watts told members that the number includes five patients in its intensive therapy unit (ITU).

The number of patients has been rising, although Ms Watts suggested they are “not as high”, considering the rise in infections during October.

Unlike during the initial weeks of the pandemic in February, “vulnerable people are taking care of themselves”, she said.

The hospital has also become better at treating patients for Covid. “It’s also down to some of the interventions we have planned. As time has gone by we’ve planned what interventions work better,” Ms Watts said.

But the number of Covid patients is likely to increase, because “we know there’s always a big lag between infections and the number of people admitted to hospital.”

At the height of the pandemic, there were more than 70 patients receiving intensive care for Covid at the hospital, in Fulham Road.

The borough of Kensington and Chelsea saw 195 new confirmed cases in the five days up to November 4. This gave the borough an infection rate of 124.9 cases per 100,000 people.

Meanwhile, Kensington and Chelsea council is urging more people to book flu vaccinations and relieve pressure on the NHS.

The vaccine is available from GPs and pharmacies for the over 65s, those with long-term health conditions, pregnant women and children aged between two and 11 years old

Councillor Sarah Addenbrooke, the council’s lead member for public health, said: “I want to encourage everyone who should have a flu vaccination to have theirs as soon as possible. It’s quick and painless.

“Despite the lockdown your GPs and pharmacists remain open and ready to provide the vaccination to all those who are entitled to one. Help protect your family, friends and neighbours and help ease the pressure on the NHS this winter.”

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