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An open letter to the people of Torbay and South Devon from our Chairman (Sir Richard Ibbotson) and our Chief Executive (Liz Davenport)

Published: 19 May 2020

Chairman (Sir Richard Ibbotson) and our Chief Executive (Liz Davenport)

We wanted to take this opportunity to thank the people of Torbay and South Devon for their overwhelming support of our health and care workers through the COVID-19 pandemic. We understand that the experience has been challenging for our community and that the human cost has been high. Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected.

We are extremely proud of, and grateful for, the care, compassion, flexibility and sheer hard work of all our staff who have kept vital services running making sure that all of our patients and their families have been supported through their illness.

We have been humbled by the support we have received from local individuals and companies. The ‘clap for carers’ every Thursday signifies the community spirit, patience and understanding that has been so important in helping us all deal with lockdown, as well as enabling the NHS to keep services running. It has been a huge boost for staff morale. We take part each week, to recognise the contribution of all key workers and volunteers providing essential services – in care homes, shops, schools, buses, transport networks, council services and others.

We have received support in so many other ways too – from donations of food, hand sanitiser and PPE, to children’s drawings to brighten up our hospitals and, of course, people’s fundraising efforts. The donors are too many to name here, but we appreciate all your efforts and your gifts, they are making a real difference. Thank you.

Today, we also want to thank our partners and local communities. We do not work alone; we work with GPs, councils, care homes, charities and the voluntary sector to provide joined up services that meet people’s broader wellbeing needs. Health and care staff provide care in people’s homes, and the local community supports them in so many other ways – by collecting shopping, offering transport, running local clubs and support groups, walking dogs, to name just a few.

We are proud to be part of a community that has come together to work in partnership and serve the needs of our people. The experience will help us build and shape services for our future.

Sir Richard Ibbotson, Chairman
Liz Davenport, Chief Executive
 Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust