Happy 72nd Birthday to the NHS

In what has been the toughest year for the NHS since its launch in 1948, the National Health Service will celebrate its 72nd birthday on Sunday 5 July.

NHS staff at every level from cleaners, doctors, porters, nurses, and pharmacists have gone above and beyond to help our patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Across Waltham Forest and indeed nationally, staff have done an amazing job to keep people safe, and adapt extremely quickly.  

For example here in Waltham Forest we have invested in a major overhaul of IT equipment for our primary care teams to allow them to continue to provide safe, effective care for local residents. We have worked with colleagues across north east London to help people who have found themselves homeless, making sure they can access care, have somewhere to isolate and get the support they need to move forward with their lives post-covid, and we have been working closely with care homes, making sure they have improved access to clinical input when they need it most. We have also supported all of our staff to take on redeployment roles to support partner organisations closer to the frontline where the pressure has been the greatest in the setting up of the Nightingale Hospitals, the distribution of PPE and managing testing for care staff to help them do their best.  We are working tirelessly to continue to improve access to care, reduce health inequalities and improve health outcomes and as one body among many which make the NHS we will continue to do our best through covid and beyond.  

Dr Ken Aswani, local GP and Chair of NHS Waltham Forest Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “Right now as we take a moment to reflect on the achievements and learning from 72 years as a national health system I would like to take this opportunity to wish the NHS a very happy birthday and to say thank you to all the hard-working NHS staff who are helping to save lives and keep local people safe every day, every week, every year - for most people from our first to last breath.  

“The momentous birthday will be a moment for everyone to reflect on everything our communities have recently endured, stand in solidarity to mourn our losses, and thank those who are risking so much to keep us safe.

“Everyone in our community has played a role and today I am thanking everyone from truck drivers and cleaners to doctors and shelf stackers, all of the key workers who have kept us going. It will also be a thank you to our neighbours, the ones who did the shopping, got the prescriptions, kept an eye on each other or simply did their best to stay home and save lives.”

If you would like to get involved and thank all the hard-working NHS staff, please join us on 5 July at 5pm for a country-wide clap to say #ThankYouTogether