As part of plans, the Trust will start to look at virtual appointments as well as other alternative arrangements.
Tim Noble, Medical Director at DBTH said “Our services will come under significant pressure as the coronavirus spreads, and we need to make sure that we have as many beds available as possible in order that we can care for patients with severe respiratory problems.
“Every hospital in England has now been asked to suspend all non-urgent and elective operations at the latest by 15 April for at least three months. We will be maintaining urgent and emergency care cases and cancer treatments.
“We are starting to scale down non-urgent and elective operations and outpatient appointments this week and next. We are doing this in a managed way to ensure we make safe, clinically led decisions and communicate well with patients through this process. We will also be moving to telephone and video appointments for outpatients wherever possible, whilst maintaining some capacity for urgent face to face appointments.
“We know many people waiting for treatment will be disappointed or worried, and we will be contacting everyone affected as soon as possible.”