John Lewis Partnership announces new initiative to help frontline NHS workers
The John Lewis Partnership is installing a wellbeing area for medical staff and volunteers at the Nightingale NHS Hospital in London as part of its efforts to help the NHS during the coronavirus crisis.
The space will be the only area in the main part of the hospital that all staff can use to relax away from the challenging environment. In addition, composer Alejandro Bonatto has created a playlist to help staff unwind in one of three different wellbeing zones.
Sharon White, chairman of John Lewis Partnership, said: “The John Lewis Partnership salutes the courage and humanity of every NHS worker fighting this awful virus. We are exceptionally lucky to have an amazing health service open to all. As a small token, we’re donating food and essential items to the NHS; we’re making it easier for NHS workers to shop in Waitrose and we’re helping staff at the new Nightingale Hospital in London. We will do more over the coming weeks.”
In a further move, the partnership has teamed up with the British Medical Association to distribute care packages for frontline NHS workers at the busiest hospitals across the UK. It has begun making 400 deliveries of items such as deodorant, shaving foam, hand cream, antibac hand gel and lip balm for NHS staff to use during long shifts. The boxes also contain snack foods, tea, coffee and socks as well as a wellbeing leaflet with information about a 24/7 counselling service and guidance from the BMA on a range of issues.
Dr Chaand Nagpaul, British Medical Association chair of council, said: “The BMA is delighted to be working with John Lewis and Waitrose to provide these care boxes to so many frontline staff over the coming weeks. Whilst we know that many staff are facing huge challenges, we hope these boxes will bring a few smiles and some comfort to as many staff as possible during these incredibly difficult times.”
The John Lewis Partnership is also accommodating on-call NHS key workers on its Leckford Estate in Hampshire. The partnership’s hotels team is helping key medical staff who need to be near their hospital to stay in the farm’s lodges which are usually used as holiday homes for partners. NHS staff staying at the lodges are primarily key workers at The Royal County Hampshire Hospital in Winchester.
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