IW NHS Trust chief urges: Keep following social distancing rules

Maggie Oldham, the Chief Executive of the Isle of Wight NHS Trust, has told Islanders that social distancing is making a difference in the battle against coronavirus, and has thanked them for their efforts.

Speaking to Isle of Wight Radio this morning, Ms Oldham said: “We have sacrificed our freedom and so much of normal life. We will continue to fight against the virus and people are making sacrifices which is protecting the community and saving lives.

“I speak with other chief executives across the country and they are envious of our preparedness and low numbers of confirmed cases. We expect coronavirus to be with us for months to come, but we will be here for you every step of the way. We don’t know when restrictions will be lifted, but we have come too far to become complacent. Please keep following the social distancing rules.”

Ms Oldham also revealed that a new testing centre is arriving on the Island, and will be up and running next week, and will be initially used for testing key workers who are displaying symptoms.

The Chief Executive also emphasised that St Mary’s Hospital remains open to anyone who has non-related coronavirus illnesses or injuries, and urged people not to ‘suffer in silence’.

She said: “Even with the coronavirus outbreak, we are still here for you if you are ill or injured. Don’t suffer in silence or delay help. Our services are here for us all. Seriously or unwell people can still be cared for. If you have concerns, then seek clinical help like you would do normally.”