COVID-19 update - 17 June 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. We will do our best to keep you updated with the latest information and key decisions from the Strategic Health Co-ordinating 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
Today our clinical commissioning groups (CCGS), the Northern Cancer Alliance and North of England Commissioning Support (NECS) have launched a new social media campaign aimed at tackling the fall in the number of people going to their GP with concerns regarding cancer symptoms.

The campaign 'Why Wait? Cancer Doesn’t' will run for four weeks and includes social media graphics, an animation and promoted social and digital advertising. Please support the campaign by sharing and re-tweeting CCG, NECS, Northern Cancer Alliance and ICS social media posts to help spread the word.

This campaign is a fantastic addition to all the work that is underway across our region to reassure our communities that the NHS is here for them if they need it, and not to delay seeking help and advice. For copies of the visuals contact or

An updated animation to remind the public to wear face coverings when attending healthcare settings is now available and includes a voice over which is better for those who are visually impaired. It’s available here. For a downloadable version (MP4 format) contact There are also a range of national materials available which can be accessed here

In case you haven’t seen it, I thought you would be interested in reading this article in The Guardian where Sir James Mackey reflects on what has happened in the NHS over the past few months, including what we’ve managed to achieve in such a short space of time and what we can learn for the future.

On the 5 July we will be marking the 72nd anniversary of the NHS in what has been the most challenging year in its history. It’s an opportunity for us all to recognise and say thank you to the incredible commitment and skill of our staff, and to our partners and many other organisations across the region who support us. At the same time, we will be remembering all those affected by COVID-19, especially those who lost have loved ones. They will be very much in our thoughts.

Later this week we will be sharing this very short film on our social media accounts to say thank you to the many businesses and organisations who have donated and supplied PPE to us over the past few months. We have tried to include everyone and we have a dedicated thank you page on our website.

From next week this bulletin will be published once a week following our Strategic Health Co-ordinating Group meeting on Thursday afternoon. So, today’s bulletin will be the last one for this week.

I do hope you have found our regular updates helpful over the past few months but the time now feels right to step down the frequency. Of course, we will keep this under review and continue to welcome your feedback on content.

There is no doubt that we all continue to be very busy and there remains many challenges for us as we balance the need to restart treatments and care, with keeping our patients and staff safe.

Working together will continue to be a key strength for us all as we move forward through the summer, into the winter and beyond. We’ve got a great a track record of doing this and I would like to share my appreciation to you all for everything you have been doing. You have been outstanding.

I’ll be back in touch next week but until then please stay safe and keep up the great work.

Best wishes,

Alan Foster is executive lead for the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System

Other news

Clinical tools and resources made by GPs in the North East and North Cumbria
The Clinical Digital Resource Collaborative (CDRC), a steering group of partner organisations from primary care in our region, has recently launched CDRC Precision. This is a suite of free-to-use clinical tools and resources designed and developed in the North East and North Cumbria by local GPs. The tools can be accessed by clinical software systems, SystmOne and EMIS. CDRC has launched a dedicated website which will host all the resources it develops.

CDRC is supported by the Academic Health Science Network for the North East and North Cumbria and the North of England Commissioning Support Unit. During this unprecedented time, CDRC has supported the COVID-19 response, including developing resources that can identify and manage patients with potential COVID-19, identify and shield the most vulnerable patients, as well as developing a deferred treatment module that allows a structured way to flag and capture any intervention that needs deferring, including cancer.

Online seminar: North-East and Yorkshire COVID-19, Re-thinking the Reset – Support for Care Homes Online Seminar (23 June 2020 2.00-3.30pm)
This seminar is aimed at people across the health and care sector, in leadership, commissioning and operational roles. Please share with colleagues and visit this link for more information or to book a place.

NHS statement on Coronavirus (Covid-19) - 17 June
A further 77 people, who tested positive for the Coronavirus (Covid-19) have died, bringing the total number of confirmed reported deaths in hospitals in England to 28,138. Patients were aged between 29 and 98 years old. Two patients, aged 62 and 98, had no known underlying health conditions. Their families have been informed.

The number of deaths of patients with Covid-19 by region are as follows:
East of England 6
London 4
Midlands 19
North East & Yorkshire 8
North West 16
South East 22
South West 2

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, 12 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 by following this link.

For further information please contact the NHS England media team on or 01138 250958/9

The R number in the UK: The Government publishes regional R values for England. Keep an eye on this page for updates.

Public Health England dashboard: The Public Health England (PHE) dashboard can be found here.Our daily reporting includes deaths that have occurred in all settings where there has been a positive COVID-19 test, including hospitals, care homes and the wider community. The report also includes case rates per 100,000 resident population at lower tier local authority level.