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02.11.16

Cancellations ongoing at Lincolnshire trusts after major virus attack

A computer virus has infected electronic systems at Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS FT (NLAG), forcing it to cancel the vast majority of operations and appointments.

Following expert advice, the trust has shut down the majority of its systems so it can isolate and destroy the virus, which infected the system on 30 October.

Today, the trust advised patients that the vast majority of planned operations, outpatient appointments and diagnostic procedures are still cancelled.

Dr Karen Dunderdale, deputy chief executive of NLAG, said: “Our main priority is patient safety. All adult patients should presume their appointment/procedure has been cancelled unless they are contacted. Those who turn up will be turned away.”

NLAG covers three hospitals – Diana, Princess of Wales; Scunthorpe General; and Goole and District.

The trust said appointments would continue in the following areas only: audiology, physiological measurements, antenatal, community, therapy, chemotherapy, paediatrics, gynaecology and immunology appointments and cardiothoracic and vascular appointments with visiting consultants from Hull.

NLAG was taken out of special measures in 2014, but a CQC inspection earlier this year found that it had failed to maintain the improvements in standards.

United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULH), which shares four of its IT systems with NLAG, also had to cancel some operations while it worked to restore them.

Andrew Prydderch, deputy director of urgent care at ULH, said: “We may still cancel a very small number of operations until all systems are back working but our doctors are working hard to keep this to an absolute minimum.”

He also warned patients to expect delays for A&E services and outpatient appointments at the four ULH hospitals – Lincoln County; Grantham and District; Pilgrim Hospital Boston; and County Hospital Louth.

(Image c. NLAG)

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