Hundreds of NHS Volunteer Responders in Dorset will be able to report for duty today and start helping the NHS in its fight against coronavirus.
Over 750,000 people, nationally, signed up to the NHS’ call for volunteers in just four days when the scheme launched, three times the original target.
Royal Voluntary Service, the charity delivering the volunteer effort, will have completed checks for the three quarters of a million applications by the end of Tuesday.
Thanks to the huge response, the group of vulnerable people they will support in England has now been expanded and they will come to the aid of 2.5 million at risk people.
From today the volunteers will be:
. delivering medicines from pharmacies
. driving patients to appointments
. bringing them home from hospital
. making regular phone calls to check on people isolating at home
. transporting medical supplies and equipment for the NHS.
Thousands of these approved volunteers will be offered tasks from today via the GoodSAM app and will start helping people safely, with more expected to get requests over the coming weeks as referrals ramp up.
Health professionals, pharmacists and local authorities can upload requests for help on the NHS Volunteer Responders referrer’s portal and volunteers pick the job they want to do that day and close the task once complete.
Volunteers show themselves as available when their app is switched to ‘on duty’.
President of national volunteering charity, Royal Voluntary Service, HRH The Duchess of Cornwall has shared a message of thanks to the 750,000 people who have stepped forward to volunteer as NHS Volunteer Responders.
Health and Social Care Secretary, Matt Hancock, said:
“I want to thank every single person who signed up to be a NHS Volunteer Responder – their incredible generosity means we can now start helping those most in need across our communities and, in turn, support our heroic NHS staff and social care staff as they continue their outstanding work.
“Coronavirus is one of the greatest challenges our country has faced, and it is truly awe inspiring to see our whole nation coming together to help each other at this difficult time.”