Since the announcement earlier this week about the proposed easing of restrictions across the UK with estimated dates, we’ve had enquiries about when volunteers will return back to Nottinghamshire Healthcare sites.
The short answer is not yet.
When the pandemic hit, we suspended most on site volunteer roles and had a few “COVID-19 Responder” roles supporting frontline staff across the Trust. We’ve since moved most of our volunteering online, providing training and equipment to help support volunteers who’ve made the change too. We still have a number of volunteers who are waiting until their physical role is reinstated.
Above all, we want volunteers to return to sites safely.
As a team, we find out about the Government’s decision and dates when the rest of the population does. Based on the announcement and estimated stepping down of restrictions, we’re going to spend the next couple of weeks planning how our volunteers can return to site and how we manage the risks involved. This means that we need to consider a few things, including:
- What volunteer roles need prioritising in their return?
- Are placement officers still in their roles or have they been redeployed?
- What PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) will volunteers need?
- Will volunteers need Infection, Prevention & Control training?
- Will volunteers need access to a vaccine before returning?
- What support will volunteers need in returning to site?
- What support will staff need in the return of volunteers?
Once we have answers to a few of these questions and a plan is established, we’ll let our volunteers and staff know.
We’re eager to get people back into their roles supporting patients, carers, staff and services; and we know our volunteers are as eager too.