Witnessing a desperate need in our own country Inter Care has swiftly responded to the Corona virus health crisis. By way of a direct response we have donated bespoke deliveries of personal protective equipment (PPE) to 20 care homes across Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire and a local hospice, LOROS. 10 Doctors surgeries in the Leicester area also received PPE donations.
The risk of infection from Corona virus is very serious for care home residents, many of whom struggle with dementia and can find it difficult to follow social distancing and good hand hygiene guidance. They rely on care home staff for intimate personal care, putting both staff and residents at risk as soon as the virus gets into a home.
“It is very stressful and we’re working really hard. We‘ve got a fantastic team of people here working round the clock, keeping our residents safe. Thank you Inter Care, Thank you.”Lisa Stinson, Cedar House Care Home
The government’s advice to care homes on PPE is almost identical to that given to hospital workers – they should have single-use disposable gloves, aprons and face masks. Nevertheless, care providers have been saying for some weeks that it is difficult to get enough of these items to keep their staff and residents safe. Care homes have said their staff members feel “vulnerable”, especially due to the lack of PPE. Source: BBC news online
Inter Care has surplus stocks of a variety of quality PPE in their warehouse donated by Pal International and Peregrine Livefoods. Usually destined for rural health centres and hospitals in sub-Saharan Africa, these stocks can’t be exported due to UK lock down restrictions so we have been busy re-directing this valuable commodity with their agreement. Firstly, by establishing the need locally – 54 care homes were contacted of which 20 expressed great need and had short PPE supplies. Volunteers then delivered consignments of potentially lifesaving PPE to care homes within Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire. Among other items in the consignments Inter Care donated were over 32000 gloves and 6,220 face masks , Aprons, overshoes and sleeves and wipes In addition 960 FFP2 face masks were delivered to doctor’s surgeries in the local area by our volunteer Dr Raj Babla.
“Thank you very very much, we really appreciate it as we were desperately running low – we will divide it (PPE donation) between our three homes as we have one in Loughborough and another in East Leake too.”Stephan Hardy – Accomplish Group
The PPE delivery project was carried out over three days in mid-April by Kathryn Garnett, Inter Care Trustee and Volunteer, with warehouse and administrative support from the staff team. The project’s success has received praise from our supporters and media coverage from BBC’s East Midlands today programme.
As soon as export restrictions are lifted by the UK government, Inter Care will return to sending medical aid to Africa once again. In Malawi, rural hospitals are facing the Corona virus pandemic with only 17 ventilators to serve a population of 18 million. It seems likely that faced with such overwhelming need Africa will be greatly challenged – naturally we hope to be back supporting them as soon as possible.