Thousands of volunteers make home-made products for NHS staff

Thousands of volunteers across the south have been making homemade products for NHS workers.

Headbands and laundry bags made by community groups have been delivered to hospital staff, to help them during the coronavirus pandemic.

A mother and daughter team from West Sussex set up a homemade production line.

The pair from Bognor Regis have designed hairbands to prevent mask straps from chafing the skin of medical staff.

  • Julie Winter and Hollie Busby

Julie Winter said staff have been "very appreciative" and that care-workers had sent in photos and messaged them to say thank you.

Hollie Busby said the creation of home-made products also helps the elderly, as they "feel they can help".

She said: "I think it spreads positivity around the community. They're not alone".

In Oxfordshire, a sewing group has been producing thousands of cotton bags for NHS hospital staff.

The cotton bags are used to put contaminated clothes inside.

Medical staff and care-workers can then take it straight home and put it into the washing machine, without coming into direct contact with the clothes.

Elsewhere, the Frensham Heights School in Farnham donated protective visors to medical staff.

Sarah Stradling, a GP working in Camberley, also received a heartfelt note from the school.

NHS workers, care-workers and other medical staff say they are very grateful for the work being done by people at home.

Sharon Herring, Royal Berkshire Hospital said she would like to thank them for "pulling together" and describes the products as "so useful".

She said: "The staff benefit greatly and I don't think people realise how wonderful they are by just doing this work for us."

  • Sharon Herring, Royal Berkshire Hospital

However, hospital trusts are reminding people that they should not bring donations directly into hospitals, and should use online portals instead.

Sarah Vaccari, Oxford Hospitals Charity said people should not make face masks for medical workers, as it is for "a clinical setting" and they "simply cannot take those".

She said: "The main thing is to check in with us as a charity. Work with us and then we can take on as many of these kind offers as possible."

  • Sarah Vaccari, Oxford Hospitals Charity

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