Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT) is still experiencing issues after its IT systems failed last week as a result of the UK’s extreme heatwave.
Some IT systems are now back online but the trust is still suffering significant IT problems at its sites which is impacting services.
A spokesperson for Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust said: “We continue to respond to significant IT problems on our sites, which is having an ongoing impact on our services. While the majority of appointments have gone ahead, unfortunately we have had to postpone some operations and appointments.
“We are very sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused and our staff are doing everything possible to minimise the impact on patients. Where urgent care has been affected we will be contacting patients to rearrange their care at the earliest opportunity.
“The trust has well established business continuity plans to allow us to continue as much activity as possible and to ensure that patient safety is prioritised at all times.
“Some IT systems are back online and our teams are working around the clock to fix these problems as soon as possible.”
Last week the Guardian reported that Guy’s and St Thomas’ were forced to cancel operations, postpone appointments and divert seriously ill patients to other hospitals in London because of the IT problems, caused by the high temperatures.
Whilst the system was down, doctors could not see patients’ medical notes remotely and were having to write down the results of all examinations by hand. GSTT labelled the issue a “critical site incident” and apologised to patients, the Guardian also revealed.
Some of these issues remain, with the trust working hard to rectify all problems and return to a full service. Further updates will be provided on the trust’s Twitter account in due course.
The trust’s chief executive, Professor Ian Abbs, made a heartfelt apology to the patients, families and staff that have been affected by the issues whilst confirming that a review will take place into what exactly has happened.
He said: ““My executive colleagues and I want to extend a heartfelt apology to all those who have been affected by the extremely serious IT problems that we have been experiencing.
“That apology is to our patients, their families and our local communities for the impact this incident may have had on their care; and also to our colleagues, for the significant impact that this has had on their ability to deliver the high quality care to which we always aspire.
“On Tuesday 19 July, as a result of extreme heat, the two data centres on our Guy’s and St Thomas’ sites failed – this is unprecedented and happened very quickly.
“While our immediate priority is to get our IT systems back up and running as safely and quickly as possible, we will be commissioning an external, independent review to look in detail at what happened and to ensure we identify and learn all the lessons.”
The full apology and update on the status of the trust’s problems can be found on their website here.