THE private Duchy Hospital in Truro has made its entire capacity and all staff available to help in the fight against COVID-19.

Working closely with the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust (RCHT), a relocation of numerous wards from Royal Cornwall Hospital, Treliske, will be facilitated at Duchy Hospital, which is located close by.

Among those being relocated is the Lowen Ward, an 18-bed ward that specialises in treating haematology, oncology and palliative care patients.

Also following, alongside its staff, will be the RCHT medical day unit. This specialist unit can assess and treat patients within the same day for a wide range of medical conditions.

The move of both departments will be finalised by the end of this week.

Louise Rowbotham, hospital director at Duchy Hospital, said: “Duchy Hospital will do everything it takes to support Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust and the people of Cornwall at this time of crisis.

“Our staff are ready to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the NHS at the frontline to fight against COVID-19.”

This comes in light of a major deal struck between NHS England and operators Health Care UK, which announced that it will provide additional emergency capacity to the NHS from all of its hospitals. 

The deal includes the provision of urgent acute, trauma, medical and cancer cases.

Kate Shields, Chief Executive at RCHT, said: “It’s fantastic to see how our local community is rallying round to make sure Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly get through this together. The support from Ramsay and the team at Duchy will be really important to our combined efforts and will help us to save lives and do the absolute best we can for our people.”

Duchy Hospital has also immediately deployed an anaesthetist, an orthopaedic theatre team as well as physiotherapists and occupational therapists to assist the trauma team at St Michael’s, Hayle.

In order to be support the trust’s critical care plan for the later phases of COVID-19, any Duchy Hospital clinical staff with relevant skills will also be trained to work in ITU in the coming weeks in order to ensure they are available when needed.

A spokesperson from RCHT recognised the ‘long-standing partnership’ with Duchy Hospital and highlighted the importance of togetherness as they set to face the challenges ahead as ‘one team’.