Norfolk hospitals get Covid fight boost as council staff help on wards

Lucy Humphries was flown to Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, where she died. Picture: Nick B

Norfolk County Council staff are helping at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. - Credit: Archant

Norfolk's hospitals have been given a boost as they continue to deal with the pressures of coronavirus, with council workers drafted in to help on wards.

Councils, through the Norfolk Resilience Forum, were asked if it could provide mutual aid - making staff available to give the NHS assistance, for the next month.

It came as the county's hospitals were under major pressure, due to the number of patients they were treating who had tested positive for Covid-19.

Firefighters from Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service had already been deployed to help at the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn.

The firefighters are assisting with swab tests and fitting personal protective equipment and, from Monday, they will also be helping at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH).

Prof Nancy Fontaine, the hospital's chief nurse, said: “We say a huge welcome to the men and women of Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service who are going to join us here.

"We are extremely grateful to them for their support as we all fight for a safer Norfolk.”

NNUH chief nurse Professor Nancy Fontaine. Photo: NNUH

NNUH chief nurse Professor Nancy Fontaine. Photo: NNUH - Credit: NNUH

And 40 more council staff are now being provided, including 20 staff to provide non-specialist support on hospital wards at the NNUH, QEH and Norfolk Community Health and Care.

Most Read

A Norfolk County Council spokesman said: "We are immensely proud of our colleagues across the councils who have stepped up to help and support our health colleagues at this critical time.

“Our Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service has already given over 1,100 hours of support with duties including, PPE fittings, swabbing and supporting acute and primary care network vaccination centres, with more planned for next week.

“In addition, we are proud to be working alongside staff from other districts and boroughs across Norfolk, supporting our NHS colleagues through the mutual aid system.

"Staff from our human resources team are joining colleagues from other councils to lend their skills to assist with recruitment activities for the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, providing over 160 hours of support, with others providing call handling and testing."

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus