PUBLISHED: 10:40, Tue, Apr 7, 2020 | UPDATED: 10:59, Tue, Apr 7, 2020
British Airways staff have stepped up to assist NHS staff on the frontline in a battle against the coronavirus. Though the British carrier has been pushed to furlough around 30,000 staff amid border closures and grounded flights, its staff remain active and are doing their part to tackle the virus.
The airline has launched a company-wide task force who will bring relevant skills learned on the job to help nurses, doctors and other healthcare professionals.
According to BA, the staff will bring “advanced first aid qualifications, combined with their natural passion for looking after people”, means that they can bring both technical training and natural kindness to a range of desperately needed roles for a range of organisations, including the NHS.
The airline has been in talks with a number of organisations in order to deploy its volunteers in the most useful way.
These include the NHS via their Helpforce team, which organises volunteers for the NHS and could involve working at the Nightingale hospitals being set up in London, Manchester and Birmingham as well as transporting patients and NHS workers.
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British Airways crew have stepped up to help NHS workers in the COVID-19 battle (Image: Getty Images)
Pilots helping out at Whittington hospital as part of Project Wingman (Image: Whittington Health)
Already crew and pilots have begun to offer their services at Croydon and Whittington Hospitals.
According to the Sutton and Croydon Guardian, 20 cabin staff are helping out at the hospital taking on tasks such as changing beds and helping patients use technology to contact their loved ones. This frees up vital time for doctors and nurses to focus on patient care.
Chief nurse Elaine Clancy who is leading the hospital’s response to COVID-19, told the Sutton and Croydon Guardian: “Our nurses, doctors and other healthcare professionals are working tirelessly to provide the best possible care to our patients.
“Airline staff are first aid trained or hold other clinical qualifications as well as being security cleared, so they will be a great asset to our busy teams.”
Meanwhile, at Whittington Hospital pilots from a range of grounded airlines, including British Airways and BACityFlyer, pilots are keeping spirits high as part of Project