The Young NHS Soldiers on the Front Line15th June 2020
In the latest Coronavirus update, the Prime Minister announced that from the 4th July hotels, pubs, libraries, and hairdressers can reopen for business. Whilst still acknowledging the 1+ metre rule and maintaining that these businesses are ‘COVID secure’, this means that society is slowly getting back to normal after months of staying home and in some cases not seeing family or friends.
During lockdown, the Unsung Hero Awards have focused on the amazing work that Non-Medical and Non-Clinical NHS staff have done; from Volunteers to Therapy Pets. However, another group of people who deserve to be congratulated for their work and dedication are the young NHS staff on the frontline.
The NHS reported in April that nearly 15,000 NHS nurses, midwives and medical students were poised to step up and join the ‘NHS Army’ in the frontline, alongside other senior members of staff, to provide care and support.
There have also been some amazing breakthroughs from the younger generation behind the scenes in aid of COVID-19.
Our 2020 Special Mention Award winner Michael Bryan, has been featured recently in the Daily Mirror. Being described as an ‘innovative teen,’ the article talks about Michael’s new app to help detect Coronavirus using mobile phone technology.
Michael has also developed an app that aims to help diagnose Parkinson’s all at the age of 18.
However, Michael is not the only one using innovative technology to show their support for the NHS. Commercial Director, Leon Marseglia, from video production company Pixel Playback has come up with an idea for an app called ‘Tap to Clap’ that lets you clap and show your support for not only the NHS, but other key-workers, all at the touch of a button.
The aim of the app is to get as many claps as possible within the one-minute time frame during the usual ‘clap for the NHS’ ritual at 8pm on Thursdays. Leon explained that his motivations for creating this app was to let everybody feel like they can join in with showing their support for the NHS, including those who may have a disability or find it hard to go outside.
Becca Carlson, the winner of the 2020 Apprentice of the Year Award, has now completed her Apprenticeship scheme at the Newcastle Upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust, where she worked in the Occupational Therapy Department.
Becca told us more about her experience as a young person on the NHS frontline and even gave some advice to other young NHS workers during this time of uncertainty:
“Working for the NHS during a pandemic has been a surreal experience. It has been a scary time- for me, the uncertainty has been rather anxiety provoking, especially in the early days when we were awaiting ‘the peak’. As a younger worker, I think it’s common to feel like you can’t talk about how it [Covid-19] may be affecting you. My main advice would be to speak up, talk to colleagues, family, and use services the Trust offers to you. It is so important to look after your mental health and it is ok to feel scared and anxious. You’re not alone.”
We want to give a big thank you to all the younger staff in all areas of the NHS, including students who came forward earlier than they thought they would. We are starting to see the other side of the pandemic now thanks to these brave individuals.
The Unsung Heroes awards all young people in the NHS in a Non-Medical/Non-Clinical role via our Volunteer of the Year Award. Nominations for the next Awards will be early 2021. Please follow us on social media to find our more.
Written by Lily Harrison | Freelance Content Writer