@HughBaird College’s Health, Social Care, Nursing and Dental students have been working tirelessly to help support the healthcare industry, struggling with the current Covid-19 outbreak across the city region at various hospitals, care homes, supported living accommodation and dentist practices.

Jean Cooney, Hugh Baird College Level 3 Senior Healthcare Support Worker Apprentice, said:

“I am a Senior Healthcare Support Worker at Liverpool Royal Hospital’s A&E department. In this current pandemic, being part of the NHS is hard work. We are faced with long, hot and uncomfortable days, looking after some of the sickest patients. Although it’s tough, this is the reason why I embarked on a career in the healthcare industry, to save lives. We will fight this and come out stronger than ever!”

Confirmed cases of Covid-19 have been rising sharply in Liverpool each day for a sustained period now. Sadly, this suggests that the city could be heading for a very difficult time in the coming days and weeks - because the low testing rates mean those with confirmed cases are largely so ill that they have been forced into hospital.

Annette Pollitt, Learning and Development Lead at Liverpool University Hospitals, said:

“We are very proud to have such inspirational and dedicated students, who are supporting the healthcare workforce and providing exceptional care to all patients. The skills and knowledge that the students are currently learning will be invaluable for their career ahead. Thank you for your commitment, compassion and care to patients and staff. Keep up the fantastic work and keep safe.”

Students from across the department have increased their working hours to help support employers with the Covid-19 outbreak. Some students have even had to undertake further training to help patients who need ventilation support.

Debbie Stock, Hugh Baird College’s Health and Care Delivery Co-Ordinator, said:

“A big thank you to all of our students for going above and beyond their current practices, I am blown away by the support I have witnessed our students give to not only their patience’s, but also the support they have given each other during this pandemic.”

All students have proven to go above and beyond, putting the lives of patients before themselves by working overtime and in some cases, leaving their families for up to 12 weeks to stay in their places of work to ensure they can care for the needs of others.

Sherin Swain, Hugh Baird College Level 3 Health and Social Care student, said:

“It’s been a really tough couple of weeks as a Care Assistant in Walton Manor Residential and Nursing Home. We are not only carers, we are the friends and family to the residents who can no longer see their loved ones. After gaining permission, I recently used my phone to FaceTime one of my resident’s family members and the smile on both their faces reminded me – it’s all worthwhile.”

Some of the College’s students, who were initially on volunteer placements, have now successfully achieved full-time employment in order to help support local healthcare providers such as, care homes and assisted living accommodation.

Further examples of the College’s Health, Social Care, Nursing and Dental hero students:

Liam Castell, Hugh Baird College Nurse Cadet student - Liam joined the College from Abbots Lea School in 2018. He fully embraced the challenges of ward rotations in his first year and demonstrated a willingness to learn.

During the second year of his Nurse Cadet programme at the College, Liam joined the nurse bank team and has been covering shifts on wards and the A&E department at Aintree University Hospital. Last weekend, Liam completed his first night shift which was a difficult but rewarding experience.

Liam is on target to exceed his minimum target grade and finish with an overall A*, he has also successfully been offered a place at Edge Hill University to study Adult Nursing.

Poppy McDonald, Hugh Baird College Nurse Cadet student – Poppy was a late addition to the College’s Nurse Cadet programme. After taking a year out of education to decide her pathway, she successfully applied to join the College and is really enjoying her new studies and the work experience element of the programme.

Poppy, like Liam, has also joined the nurse bank team and was only too happy to take on additional shifts to help and support those in need during this pandemic.

Megan Nicholas, Hugh Baird College Level 3 Health and Social Care student - Megan works in a local care home, she is incredibly passionate about her role and the people she cares for. She has been on ‘lock down’ staying in the care home with the Covid-19 outbreak, due to the vulnerable nature of those she cares for and those she has at home.

Megan joined the College as part of the College’s 14-16 department. Following her completion, Megan enrolled onto the College’s Level 2 Health and Social Care course and then further progressed onto the Level 3 course. Megan has received offers from Huddersfield University and Edge Hill University for Child Nursing.

Megan, alongside the rest of the students, are still checking in with their tutors via Teams and keeping on top of their college work, even in these difficult times.

Stephanie Butler, Hugh Baird College’s Course Leader for Health and Social Care, said:

“As a team of lecturers, we are immensely proud of all of our Health, Social Care, Nursing and Dental students, and have the up most admiration for them working at this critical time. Our students, whilst studying a full academic timetable, are now working within vital community and NHS roles within our local area, supporting those who are most vulnerable. They are significantly improving the lives of others. These students are young heroes, our health care professionals of the future who have put others needs before their own. They have shown professionalism, courage and selflessness. We are overwhelmed at how they have stepped up to the current challenge.”

Stay at home. Protect the NHS. Save lives. 

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