With further snowfall today and rain and strong winds forecast, the yellow weather warning is due to remain in place until 9am tomorrow. However, please bear in mind that the thaw may be slow to clear and icy conditions could remain in place for a few days.

Throughout the week, all our health centres and pharmacy staff have been doing everything they can to help patients, but with impassable roads, some of our sites have needed to close early.

However, a service has been in place for emergencies, including help and support via telephone. We have also been urging patients to reschedule their appointments, or we’ve been contacting patients in advance. However, if we have not contacted you and you are concerned, please do get in touch with the relevant department.

Meanwhile, our hospital remains open as usual, and if you have an appointment and plan to visit, please do so with caution and only attend if you feel it is safe to do so. Again, we would be happy to reschedule your appointment; please let us know in advance.

Due to the weather, we have been running with fewer staff members across the organisation and it may take us some time to get back up to speed with routine appointments and prescriptions next week, but we will do our very best and only ask that you are understanding and patient during this time. However, do get in touch if you have any questions or concerns.

As we head into the weekend and the wintry weather is set to continue, we are asking people to continue to support each other in the community and to look out for any vulnerable neighbours and friends.

Health & Social Care teams are continuing to contact clients and those known to be vulnerable and at risk. However, if you or someone you know needs urgent support, across the weekend please call 01595 744468 (10am – 4 pm) or 01595 695611 (out of hours).  That’s the duty social work number, but your call will be passed on to the appropriate SIC or NHS staff.  If you have a community alarm in your home and you need some support, even if you are worried your responders may not be able to get to you, please don’t hesitate to use it.

Lastly, and most importantly, we would like to say a big thank you to our staff, partners, and the community for your help and support. In particular we'd like to thank the Coastguard teams for transporting our patients and staff across Shetland, also, to Viking Energy, staff from across Shetland Islands Council, the volunteers, and people with tractors, 4X4 vehicles and ploughs, and many more who have helped this week as without your support, we couldn’t have done it.

Another massive thank you to all the staff, including nurses, GPs, AHPs, health care support workers, social workers, social care workers, staff in estates and facilities, and many more people who have stayed close to care homes, hospital, and more to care for our patients. To all the people who have swapped bases, worked extra/longer shifts, walked miles in the snow and much more – we say another thank you!

As a reminder, if you need health advice and it isn't an emergency, you can visit the NHS Inform website - https://www.nhsinform.scot/ or call NHS24 on 111. In an emergency, please call 999.

For more weather and community updates, please follow Shetland Islands Council's Facebook and Twitter pages.






Published: Friday, 19th January 2024