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Volunteers to help NHS beat COVID-19

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University of Reading staff and students are already contributing in the global fight against the coronavirus outbreak in a number of ways – including by simply staying at home. Yet as a community of highly skilled people, there may be more that we can do.

The Royal Berkshire Hospital is a close partner of the University. Our friends there are now on the front line in the fight against COVID-19. That’s why we are currently working with the hospital to identify ways that University staff could volunteer to help.

More details of how this will work will follow next week, but the hospital has asked for help finding people qualified as lab technicians, chefs, domestic staff, porters, child minders, facilities managers, and counsellors. They may also need people to volunteer for welcome desks, to run errands, to help people find where they are going, or otherwise help to support medical staff. Of course, they are also looking for people with relevant clinical, medical or nursing qualifications.

We are working with the hospital closely so that we respond to this call in the best way possible. We will communicate the best route to do this next week (beginning 30 March).

What else can I do?

First and foremost, you should follow all existing government advice on staying home, avoiding contact with anyone outside your household, and maintaining good hygiene. You could save someone’s life just by doing this.

If you are eligible, you could also sign up for the NHS volunteer responder scheme, using the GoodSAM app. If you do, you will be joining around half a million others in the UK who have volunteered to help the NHS with tasks such as delivering medical supplies, driving people to appointments, or calling vulnerable people in isolation to check they are OK. Find out more about the NHS volunteer responder scheme.

Thank you for your commitment to help your community.


Professor Parveen Yaqoob

Deputy Vice-Chancellor

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