I WOULD like to take this opportunity to thank our staff who over the Christmas and New Year period and indeed subsequently, have dealt with an unprecedented demand on hospital and community services.
Never before have we seen such numbers of people attending A&E services and the resultant demand for hospital beds and community support services has been immense.
Our staff have worked intensively to manage this very difficult situation at all levels in the organisation.
Our clinical teams have been on the front line tirelessly ensuring safe patient care whilst our non-clinical staff have been doing everything possible in support of them.
I am not only immensely proud of them and the contribution they make day in and day out, I am, as a resident of the borough grateful to them for the invaluable service they provide to our local community.
We owe them a debt of gratitude for all they do.
* An old letter, dated January 2013, was, unfortunately, sent to the Have Your Say page of The Shields Gazette on my behalf and was published on Thursday, January 15.
This referred to Coun George Elsom. I would like to apologise unreservedly to Coun Elsom for this error.
South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust.