Herts health workers praised for 'phenomenal' work during a 'relentless year'

Healthcare staff have been praised for their work during the past year.

Healthcare staff have been praised for their work during the past year. - Credit: Archant

They have been on the front line in the war against Covid, battling to treat patients suffering from the virus and ensuring the successful roll-out of the vaccination programme.

And now the "phenomenal" work of Herts NHS staff during a "relentless year" has been officially recognised by the county's leading healthcare official.

Speaking at the first joint meeting of Herts and west Essex CCGs (Clinical Commissioning Groups), accountable officer Jane Halpin praised the ongoing work of staff working in all sectors of the NHS.

She highlighted the recent increase in serious illness from mid-December which followed the second wave of the pandemic, which saw hospitals inundated with serious cases of the virus.

But she also praised the successful roll-out of the vaccination programme across the county, which has seen hundreds thousands of people receive their first dose of a vaccine.

According to the latest statistics, 50.7 per cent of people aged 16-plus living in the Herts and west Essex region have received their initial jab.

“The response of staff providing care in all sectors – primary care, mental health services, acute care – has just been phenomenal,” she said.

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“This has been an incredibly relentless year for staff – and people have kept going and kept proving care and support to very large numbers of very seriously ill people.”

Dr Halpin said there was a ‘real recognition’ of the strain this had placed on staff – and said there was ongoing work to support the well-being of employees as well as patients.

She also praised the “tremendous” work in rolling out a community-wide vaccination programme ‘at pace and at scale’.

“We have been hugely successful locally in reaching the priority cohorts,” she said.

“And that is in no small measure part of why we are now seeing far fewer cases of Covid illness in hospital and far fewer in community settings.”

Dr Halpin made the remarks at a joint meeting of the Hertfordshire and West Essex CCGs, which was held virtually on Thursday.