COVID-19 update - 13 May 2020

This bulletin provides important information for people working in health and care across the North East and North Cumbria regarding guidance and actions being co-ordinated across our region to care for patients, staff and our communities in the light of COVID-19. This is a fast-moving and evolving situation. We will do our best to keep you updated with the latest information and key decisions from the Strategic Health Command Group. This group is led by Alan Foster, executive lead for the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System. If you have any questions or would like us to send vital information to partners through this bulletin, please contact us here.
Message from Alan Foster
Alan Foster
Last week we asked the public to continue their amazing support for health and care services as we begin to re-start some of the non-urgent care we put on hold to enable us to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. You can read the release here.

As part of this we launched a new animation which is being shared across social media channels. You can view it here. Please do share across your channels and if you need a downloadable version contact:

It was great to see so many tributes to all our incredible nurses as part of International Nurses Day yesterday. We couldn’t be prouder of them. The Royal College of Nursing released this video to mark International Day of the Nurse and the bicentenary of the birth of Florence Nightingale.

Efforts continue across the patch to secure supplies of PPE which remains important as we will be living with this virus for some time to come. On all our minds is the potential of a second peak in coronavirus cases and planning ahead for the winter months. I would like to say thank you to everyone who has worked tirelessly to support this effort. We have built many relationships with suppliers which we hope will continue into the future. At the last count we have had support from more than 120 businesses and organisations, which is fantastic.

As you will be aware the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care announced a new online portal as part of the NHS supply chain’s central PPE logistic operations. This will enable primary and social care providers to place an order for critical PPE once a week. This is currently in the testing phase and we have begun inviting some providers from our area to be involved in this.

As you know we have a central hub based at Riverside Newburn to co-ordinate and distribute supplies and donations from businesses and the local community to those in most immediate need. It is here to help organisations which have an immediate need for supplies, you can email the team on

Additional support is in place to support pharmacists, dentists and opticians with a central contact point for those needing emergency supplies within 72 hours when all other routes have been explored. They can email detailing the type of PPE they require, and the small quantity needed (72 hours supply only).

All queries are responded to Monday to Friday between the hours of 9am-5pm.

Finally, a reminder that tomorrow night is #clapforcarers which as you know is an opportunity for us all to thank our colleagues and other key workers for all they have done to look after us all and our loved ones during these difficult times.

As always our thoughts are with those effected by this and especially those that have sadly lost loved ones during the pandemic.

Alan Foster, executive lead for the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System
Other news/guidance

NHS England/Improvement statement on Coronavirus (Covid-19) on 13 May 2020
A further 244 people, who tested positive for the Coronavirus (Covid-19) have died, bringing the total number of confirmed reported deaths in hospitals in England to 23,952.

Patients were aged between 49 and 99 years old. 4 of the 244 patients (aged between 51 and 78 years old) had no known underlying health condition. Their families have been informed.

The number of deaths of patients with Covid-19 by region are as follows:

East of England 32
London 33
Midlands 51
North East & Yorkshire 43
North West 44
South East 28
South West 13

NHS England and NHS Improvement publish the number of patients who have died in hospital and tested positive for COVID-19 in England. Since Tuesday 28 April, NHS England and NHS Improvement also reports the number of patient deaths where there has been no COVID-19 positive test result, but where COVID-19 is documented as a direct or underlying cause of death on part 1 or part 2 of the death certification process. This change has been introduced for deaths that occurred on 24 April and subsequently.

This means the NHS England and NHS Improvement data collection provides information on all COVID related (suspected and confirmed) deaths in England hospitals.

Today, 51 deaths are reported with no positive COVID-19 test result.

Additional data, including listings by Trust and date of death is available on the NHS England website and can be accessed here.