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Shout Out to Support Services!

28th April 2020

Staff right across the organisation have really been going that extra mile in recent weeks.

Support Services, is just one of those areas which has really stepped up to the mark, totally transferring the way they work, in response to the current demands, supporting frontline staff and maintaining the vital functioning of our services.

Patient meals continue as a key priority across sites, but the catering teams have huge challenges to contend with.

The main staff catering service at Craigavon has relocated from the dining room to the marquee and is now offering meals 24/7. Due to frontline workers not being able to eat on wards, they are now serving around 2,000 meals a day compared to the usual 1,000. Along with the marquee, they are also maintaining services in the front foyer coffee bar, Trust HQ and the laundry. The team are adapting to added challenges like transporting cooked meals from the kitchen to the marquee, storage, menu variety and the importance of maintaining social distancing.

Catering staff are also sorting all the food and drinks donations being sent in by the local community which we are so grateful for at this time.

Additional duties for support services team also include stocking the village areas with clean scrubs, towels and toiletries and sorting the generous toiletry donations from the public also.

Domestic teams have additional duties with the new 24/7 village facilities and of course maintaining the stringent cleaning regimes to comply with infection prevention and control standards across all of our facilities.

The Acute Booking Centre team and Craigavon Hospital secretaries are working at the donning stations, managing the cloakroom 24/7, taking staff belongings to bag, label and store.

Staff are taking deliveries of scrubs and allocating as required as well as sorting donations of nightwear and toiletries for patients whose relatives cannot visit.

Ward clerks, normally based on the wards now have to manage their phone lines and patient information systems remotely.

The team are also managing short-term accommodation requests from staff who are working back to back shifts or are concerned about staying at home.

The portering team have a huge role in keeping everything moving – transporting patients, linen, waste, blood, pharmacy goods – making sure that everyone and everything is in the right place at the right time along with providing security assistant throughout departments.

Receptionists are now a key point of contact for concerned relatives who can’t visit and of course our chaplaincy colleagues are providing much appreciated spiritual and pastoral support for patients and staff at this difficult time.

These are just a few examples of the enormous efforts going on behind the scenes. A huge thank you for supporting and sustaining your colleagues and making sure our patients get the best possible care under these difficult conditions.