In an important development during the COVID-19 pandemic, Mildmay Hospital today became the capital's primary facility for homeless COVID-19 patients not in need of intensive care, taking over from the London COVID CARE Centre.
Coordinated by the Homeless Health Operations Centre and staffed by the Healthy London Partnership, the Centre was closed as the numbers of COVID-positive people who are homeless and needing care has, thankfully, been significantly reduced. Based in a hotel by London City Airport, the centre, which opened on 11 April, had the capacity to host 60 residents. Recently, the number of people being treated had fallen to 3.
The project provided rapid testing, accommodation in which to self-isolate, and medical care, for members of the homeless community with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. Mildmay Hospital in Shoreditch, the only hospital in London and the south-east providing specialist step-down care for people who are homeless, is now taking over this work.
Geoff Coleman, Mildmay's Chief Executive says,
“This is a great opportunity for Mildmay Hospital to once again practically demonstrate how it is working with the NHS and our charity partners such as Pathway to improve the lives of Londoners”.
Mildmay's contract for providing care to people who are homeless comes to an end in July 2020. We are hoping this contract will be extended until the end of the year at least, which will allow us to complete our Homeless Pathway pilot.
Mildmay is still under threat of closure in the medium-to-long-term because there is still no funding agreement with the NHS beyond the COVID-19 special measures, which would allow us to continue with our specialist HIV work, as well as the new Homeless Pathway.
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