Nurse urges public to come in for tests

Posted on Mon, 14/09/2020

Endoscopy nurses

A nurse from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead has urged people not to turn down vital appointments that could pick up problems such as cancer – and assures patients that staff will make their visit as safe as possible.

The endoscopy department carries out procedures that look at the inside of the body using a tube with a small camera on the end.  These investigations allow staff to investigate problems and symptoms, which can include cancer.

However, endoscopy staff are concerned that many patients are postponing their appointments due to fear of coming to the hospital during the COVID pandemic.

Amanda King, senior sister on the endoscopy department at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, says: "Some patients are choosing to delay important hospital appointments during the pandemic. We can reassure patients that our team will protect the safety of everyone and we’ve changed the way we work to keep you safe."

"It’s so important that you keep an eye out for cancer symptoms and we strongly urge people to come in for investigations if they need to. We’re here to look after you and we can guarantee that we’ve done everything we can to protect you from COVID while we look after your health needs."

A range of measures have been put in place to keep everyone safe when they visit the hospital:

  • Patients are swabbed 48 hours before their appointment at a drive-through centre to make sure they are COVID negative.

  • Staff carry out enhanced cleaning of the department using especially strong cleaning agents after every procedure.

  • Staff wear full protective equipment at all times in the procedure rooms.

  • A limited number of patients are allowed in the department at any one time – especially in the recovery and changing areas.

  • All furniture in the waiting room is spaced out according to social distancing guidelines.

Patients do not have to attend the hospital alone – a relative or friend can still wait outside to take patients home after their procedure, the only difference being that our staff will contact the relative once the patient is ready to leave and will escort the patient out of the department.

If you’d like to speak to the endoscopy team, you can call 0191 445 6108 or 0191 445 8374.

Call us on 0191 482 0000

In emergencies dial 999 / Non-emergencies dial 111

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