Donating essentials and vital equipment to NHS

Posted by bv39 at Mar 30, 2020 02:55 PM |

We all know how difficult it has been for the NHS to source equipment during the coronavirus pandemic. Owing to a change in much of our usual work, laboratories were cleared so that we could donate our surplus kit and equipment to the NHS.

Donated items, essential for frontline hospital staff, have included personal protective equipment (PPE) items, which are in increasingly short supply within the NHS. We were able to hand over items including masks, disposable aprons, handwash, sanitiser and gloves.

In addition, the University’s Leicester Precision Medicine Institute (LPMI) have lent £100,000 worth of liquid handling equipment (Viaflo Assist, Viaflo 96 and twelve Viaflo multichannel pipettes) to the Leicester Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory to assist with processing COVID-19 diagnostic samples.

Thousands of items were donated from the University to the UHL and will be used at the Leicester Royal Infirmary (LRI), the Materials Handling Unit and the Leicestershire Partnership Trust, based at Loughborough Hospital.

Professor Philip Baker, Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Head of the College of Life Sciences, Dean of Medicine said:

“The University of Leicester is proud to be doing all it can to support the vital work of our NHS colleagues during this unprecedented time of national need.

“The NHS has an overwhelming job in front of it - our dedicated staff and students are determined to put the care of patients first and help in whatever capacity they can. This is about being prepared, organised and trained to support where we can.”

Dr Megan Evans is Clinical Research Fellow at the University of Leicester and Honorary Public Health Registrar, she holds a joint position between both. In her capacity as a public health doctor, Megan has been supporting the regional and national response to COVID19.

She said: “As we know, the situation is rapidly evolving, and I was recently seconded to Public Health England Colindale to support the national response centre there.

“I spent two weeks in the Clinical and Epidemiology Cells, contributing to national preparedness plans and immediate public health responses.”

Megan’s role in this capacity has involved managing complex clinical enquiries and undertaking core epidemiological functions. She continues to support the regional public health response here in the East Midlands and will be spending a day a week with the COVID-19 response centre at Public Health England East Midlands.

If you’d like to help the COVID-19 response, as a volunteer, you can register on our specially created database. From here you may be asked to work as a voluntary healthcare assistant, porter, secretary and more.

The University will act as a lynchpin between the NHS and the volunteers helping to alleviate any administrative pressures from the health service and rapidly provide suitable candidates as the need arises.

Training and graduating medical students will be able to progress as planned and serve as newly qualified doctors at the front line of the NHS. In addition, there will be opportunities for medical and allied health students to undertake training to become health care assistants, who can then be called upon as needed.

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