BHSF employees have joined the nationwide army of volunteers who are making essential personal protective equipment [PPE] for the NHS.

With scrubs in increasingly short supply during the Covid-19 pandemic, thousands of would-be needleworkers have taken it upon themselves to supply homemade gowns and face masks to those on the frontline.

And Rebecca Wright, a BHSF clinical administrator from County Down, is one of those thoughtful individuals.

“My best friend is a nurse at Ulster Hospital and it was the thought of staff having to go to work without PPE that encouraged us to help protect those who look after us,” said Wright, a member of the Dundonald Darners, a community group who have been making a variety of garments for the last few weeks.

“Scrubs are in big demand because hospital staff have to change and boil wash their uniforms frequently to kill the virus.

“The staff receiving PPE are overwhelmed by the generosity.”

Like thousands of other volunteers, the Dundonald Darners have been working round the clock to supply PPE to the local hospitals and care homes most in need.

Wright explained: “A few weeks ago, 70 sets of scrubs and laundry bags went into the Medical Assessment Unit at Ulster Hospital [while] 12 sets of scrubs and laundry bags have been supplied to Marie Curie.

“We have also donated over 500 masks to carers in the community and care homes.”
BHSF chief transformation officer Shelley Rowley said: “NHS staff are doing an incredible job in the most trying circumstances and their health and safety is so, so important right now.

“Any small part we can play in helping them during this pandemic is a fantastic use of our time, and I’d like to say a massive thank you to all the BHSF employees who have been getting involved.

“It’s yet another in a long list of examples of how our staff are doing anything they can to make even just a small difference in these extraordinary times.”

Rowley added: “On behalf of everyone at BHSF, I also want to thank the NHS for everything they have done for us all over the last couple of months.

“While our employees have been tremendously selfless in making PPE equipment in their own time, I’m sure they would all agree that the real heroes are all those on the frontline.”