405,000 people sign up to help NHS support vulnerable people during coronavirus outbreak
405,000 volunteers signed up overnight for an NHS volunteer scheme announced yesterday by Secretary of State for Health & Social Care Matt Hancock.
In his daily briefing on Wednesday March 25, the Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the call had seen 405,000 people respond in just 24 hours.
NHS Volunteer Responders will help the health service to support the 1.5m people who are at most risk from coronavirus and have been told not to leave their homes at all in the next 12 weeks.
Matt Hancock asked for 250,000 people in England to help bolster the NHS’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic, calling on fit and healthy people to sign up for four specific roles - Community Response volunteer, Patient Transport volunteer, NHS Transport volunteer and Check-in and Chat volunteer.
NHS England's national medical director Stephen Powis told BBC Breakfast this morning he was "bowled over" by the response which saw three people per second apply to the scheme.
Community response volunteers will help by collecting shopping, medication or other essential supplies for someone who is self-isolating, and delivering these supplies to their home.
Patient transport volunteer will provide transport to patients who are medically fit for discharge, NHS transport volunteers will transport equipment, supplies and/or medication between NHS services and sites, and check-in and chat volunteers will provide short-term telephone support to individuals who are at risk of loneliness as a consequence of self-isolation.