Open letter to Bristol’s NHS workers

This is a copy of a letter which is being shared with NHS staff across Bristol.

To Bristol’s NHS workers,

I wanted to take this opportunity to write to all working in our NHS and our health partners to thank you for everything you have done to care for Bristolians and to keep our city safe.

Over the past few months, I have been deeply impressed by the dedication of those working in our hospitals, GP surgeries, community health centres, mental health services, ambulance service, accident and emergency units, inpatient services across our city’s diverse health service.

I know that coronavirus has placed new and unprecedented challenges on our health service. The excellent response and care our citizens have received during this time have been the product of dedicated teamwork, creative and responsive planning, and many hours of hard work. I’m aware that for many that has meant adjusting to unfamiliar ways of working, hours wearing uncomfortable PPE, anxiety, and time away from friends, family and loved ones.

As thoughts turn to summer and lockdown restrictions are eased further, I am aware that your work does not stop, and that the fight against this virus and the work of managing the wider knock-on effects to our health services goes on. I am particularly mindful that as Bristol processes the loss and the trauma caused by Covid-19 and the economic downturn it has brought, our health services (and particularly our mental health services) will be preparing for the possibility of an uptick in demand.

It is in this context that I write on the city’s behalf to offer our ongoing thanks and appreciation. I hope that you have already felt the city’s gratitude – not only in the applause, cheering and occasional fireworks on Thursday nights, but in the appreciation of patients in your care and in the recognition of your friends, neighbours and community of the work you do in these extraordinary times.

I hope that you get opportunities to rest and recuperate in the months ahead. Thank you for all you have done, and all you continue to do, to put the health of our city first.

Yours sincerely,

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol

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