More than £12 million is being pumped into Lancashire's A&Es departments this winter as the Government prepares for a potential further spike of coronavirus.

Across four of Lancashire's five NHS trusts, a total of £12,489,000 will be split between A&E departments as part of a national £300m fund to ring-fence the NHS this coming winter.

Around half (£6.05m) is going to Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Royal Preston Hospital and Chorley Hospital.

Almost £2.8m is being given to Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust; £1.7m to Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust; and £1.9m to University Hospitals Of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust.

Worryingly, no money has been assigned to the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs Royal Blackburn Hospital.

The trust also looks after residents across East Lancashire, which in recent months has seen a worrying rise in new cases of coronavirus, with local lockdown measures coming in across Blackburn, Rossendale, Pendle, Burnley, and Hyndburn from late July.

Pendle currently has the second worst infection rate in all of England in the weekly data to August 9, with 82.5 cases per 100,000 people.

Blackburn with Darwen is third on the national list with 73.5 cases per 100,000 people for the same time period. Burnley is seventh on the national list, with 45.0 cases per 100,000 people.

Kevin McGee, Chief Executive of East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust told LancsLive that "patient safety is and always will be our priority".

He added that the trust is "delighted to be receiving significant central funding over the next two years that will enable us to expand our emergency department, creating extra space and facilities and implementing additional infection control procedures".

LancsLive questioned the hospital trust twice on how much funding it is receiving from central government and if any of the funding will come in time for a potential winter surge of coronavirus.

The trust declined to comment on both matters, directing LancsLive to the Department for Health.

Payments to Lancashire hospital trusts to prepare for winter 2020/21:

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is urging the public to feel confident to visit A&E for the treatment they need, adding that strict social distancing and hygiene measures are in place to protect patients.

As for the millions in funding for four of Lancashire's five NHS trusts, the money can be used to expand waiting areas and increase the number of treatment cubicles, helping them boost A&E capacity by providing additional space, reducing overcrowding and improving infection control measures.

The money can also be used to increase the provision of same day emergency care and improve patient flow in the hospital to help the NHS respond to winter pressures and the risk from further outbreaks of coronavirus.

Any projects undertaken will be completed by the start of next year, leaving hospitals benefiting from the upgrades during the peak of winter.

Health Minister Edward Argar said: "Our NHS did an amazing job to ensure emergency care continued to be available for everyone who needed it during the peak of this pandemic.

"We are announcing the details of the Trusts across the country who will receive a share of £300 million to upgrade their A&Es and support emergency care to help them to continue to deliver safe and accessible services throughout the normally busy winter period. This funding is part of our record investment in NHS infrastructure to ensure our health services continue to meet the needs of the present and to be fit for future demands placed upon it."

The Prime Minister added: "These upgrades will help our fantastic NHS prepare for the winter months, helping them to deliver essential services and reduce the risk of coronavirus infections."