Important message from Peter Wightman, Managing Director

Read the latest news on redeployment and stepping down our non-business critical meetings…

Dear colleague

As the rates of COVID infection increase and the effects of a new variant start to be felt, the NHS has this week declared a Level 4 national incident. Systems are all under extreme pressure and this includes our own.

There are two key priorities for the NHS now: accelerating the vaccination programme and focussing on urgent and emergency care.

With this in mind, we are stepping down our non-business critical meetings and functions for the next few weeks. We ask that all teams discuss this and agree what that means in practice for themselves. Doing this will allow us to focus on the important and urgent work.

You can read the official communication from NHS Chief Executive Amanda Pritchard which you might find useful.

Our own COVID vaccination programme here in Herts and west Essex is now ramping up considerably to meet the challenge of offering everyone aged over 18 a booster jab by the end of the month, in line with last weekend’s announcement.

Increasing the rate of vaccination to this extent needs resource and the most important one is people. More people are needed to vaccinate and to help with administrative and support roles. CCG staff have been asked to help with this effort, and we are currently gathering requests for redeployed staff from our vaccinating partners, including PCNs, through a centralised process co-ordinated by Hertfordshire Community Trust. If you are contacted directly by a vaccination provider looking for support, please bear in mind that this is a process that is being co-ordinated centrally and they need to do this via HCT.

We don’t yet know the scale of the requests, but we are asking senior managers to consider with their teams where staff may be released – including some requests for internal redeployment. Much of our teams’ work is already focussed on the key priorities, including covid management and vaccination and we don’t anticipate that we will be releasing large numbers of people, but we have a responsibility to make sure the vaccination programme is sufficiently supported. I expect many of you will be keen to join this major endeavour.

While we firm up arrangements for this programme of redeployment, do have a think about whether you would be able to support this work, and speak to your manager about that. There may be some scope for people to provide support on an occasional basis, particularly during the holiday period. We will be sending out more information about all of this soon.

We also expect that Beverley will be able to give us all some up-to-date information at today’s all staff briefing. I look forward to seeing you there.

With best wishes

Peter Wightman
Managing Director

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