A special bus used to help NHS staff recuperate and unwind has been given glowing feedback from carers on the frontline.
As we mark Mental Health Awareness Week and its theme of kindness, staff have reflected on having a luxury vehicle on site at the University Hospital of North Tees over the last month.
The bus, provided by Vans for Bands to the NHS during the COVID-19 pandemic. Is fitted out with a kitchen, food, soft and hot drinks, comfortable seating and beds.
It is there to give all staff at the Trust a convenient place to stay at the end of their shift. Or somewhere to relax on their breaks.
The initiative is set to come to a close at the end of the month.
Tracey Oldfield, clinical co-ordinator in critical care, said: “The whole team in critical care have found the bus has offered a fantastic way to relax and de-stress during or at the end of a shift.
“The wellbeing of our staff is so important, particularly at this very challenging time. I’d like to thank everyone involved for helping arrange this facility for our staff.
“It truly has helped staff be at their very best for our patients.”
Helping to support our staff
Driver Mick Keighron has been managing the bus. Alongside with the Trust’s employee engagement and organisation development teams, over its entire stay on site.
He said: “It’s been really fantastic meeting all varieties of staff over the past couple of weeks. I feel part of the NHS family at North Tees and Hartlepool!
“Staff have been leaving some really positive feedback. Whether they have come on for some quiet time with a cup of tea, to have a chat if they need support, or visited to celebrate birthdays.
“It’s been a privilege for me to help any way I can towards staff. All of whom are caring for patients at the most challenging of times.”
Vans For Bands who are subsidising the project have launched a JustGiving in order help facilitate their offer. The aim of crowdfunding is to cover the costs of keeping the fleet on site at the hospitals. This is a non-profit making scheme.
To donate visit www.justgiving.com/northteesandhartlepoolnhsfoundation