Stay safe and look out for others this Christmas

Posted: December 20, 2019

A video message from our Emergency Department and Urgent Care Centre team

A leading NHS consultant working in our Emergency Department, Dr Liz Barneby, has asked people to stay safe and look out for others over the Christmas and New Year period. 

Dr Barneby, one of the hundreds of NHS staff working in Swindon over the festive period, is urging everyone to do their bit to stay well this Christmas and New Year, by checking in on neighbours and making time for a chat. 


The video message above, delivered on behalf of the emergency and urgent care staff at the Great Western Hospital in Swindon, comes ahead of the holiday season when NHS staff see the effects of loneliness, work stress and family tensions, come to a head.

All of this mixed with drink and drugs, means the team can see more people hurt, injured or very unwell from overdosing, alcohol poisoning, self-harm and domestic violence.

The team see up to 400 people a day across the emergency and urgent care service, some of whom need treatment stretching far beyond Christmas, with some families lives changed forever.

Dr Barneby takes the opportunity to explain that the team see patients in order of clinical priority.

So if you are waiting a long time after your initial assessment, this is because there are others with more critical or life threatening conditions.

She reminds local people that "our doors are open 24/7, every day of the year, to anyone who feels they or their loved ones are in need of emergency care".

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