A WEEK of reflection is being held at York Hospital starting today (Monday, June 29) to mark 100 days of treating patients with Covid-19.

It is 100 days today since the loss of the first patient at York Hospital to Covid-19, and the week will reflect the courage and endurance of NHS staff in response to the pandemic.

Staff at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust will be invited to look ‘behind the mask’ and take time out to reflect on the effect of Covid-19 on their working and personal lives.

A two minutes silence will also be held outside the front of York Hospital on Thursday, July 2 at 1pm.

Hospital Chaplain, Louise Grosberg, said: “For staff, patients and relatives Covid-19 has been a rollercoaster of emotions, but unlike a fairground ride it has been unremitting and at times felt as if it is never ending.

“Emotional exhaustion and the pain of loss is being felt throughout the Trust.

"While we have a whole range of wellbeing initiatives to support staff, the week of reflection has been organised to help people acknowledge how they feel.

"Their courage getting up each day and keeping going, combined with the anxiety for their own family during this time, has affected everyone from the most senior to the most junior of staff.”

During the week the Trust will be offering staff extra team support and drop-in psychological wellbeing sessions, and are hosting a reflective art exhibition in the hospital corridors.

Members of the public are invited to join staff at the Trust for the two minutes silence on Thursday at 1pm.

There will also be a service of reflection conducted by the chaplaincy team available online for anyone to view with a link on the Trust website on the Chaplaincy page.

Louise said: “We hope the online service of reflection will help anyone who needs a bit of support at the moment or just the acknowledgment of their loss or suffering.

"The Covid pandemic has severely affected our usual rituals such as funerals and memorials and this can leave people with a huge sense of loss.

"We would like to bring people together to reflect on what we have all been through in the last three months and to help people find a way forward.”

The week of reflection culminates in the 72nd anniversary of the NHS on July 5 when the Trust will be saying their thank you to the public.

A virtual evensong service will also be held at York Minster in recognition of the NHS with readings from York Hospital staff and chaplains and available on their website.

You can follow the week of reflection activities and find out more information on the Trust’s social media pages on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.