Following the huge and ongoing financial impact of COVID-19 on the UCO, a significant fire has now destroyed the basement infrastructure of our clinic, leaving it without heat, water and electricity. Because of this destructive fire, we have been forced to temporarily close the Clinic just as we were starting to get back on our feet working in the new normal.
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the UCO clinic has already lost more than 50% of its yearly income. This income enables us to provide subsidised treatment to our community of patients who value and depend on it. Further closure as a result of the fire impacts our long-term commitment to provide accessible and affordable healthcare for all.
Charles Hunt, Vice-Chancellor of the UCO said:
"We are not just a University College, we are also a charity that provides vital treatment and care for some of the most vulnerable in our community. Having to shut again after just coming back and regaining confidence from lockdown is a setback to our service and the diverse communities we serve. We've worked exceedingly hard to open the clinic for you and the community during lockdown earlier this year and ensuring it is COVID secure. We are now facing a second blow from the fire taking down our power and water supply. This makes opening the clinic unviable until these can be fixed."
Our sincere thanks to the Fire Brigade for their rapid response to the incident and we are so glad no one was hurt. The Fire Brigade is one of our community partners and we are so appreciative of their support.
Today we are asking for your help.
We have launched a fundraising campaign called #YourUCO asking you to donate £14, the equivalent of one concessionary-rate appointment in the clinic, or whatever you can afford. With your help, we hope to raise £10,000 to help ensure continued care to patients over Christmas and into the New Year.
Please give today and you can help ensure treatment can still be given to those who need it.
Lead image Editorial credit: Nataliia Zhekova / Shutterstock.com