Firefighters from Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service have joined with partners in the NHS to deliver vital drugs to the most vulnerable people in our region who are experiencing covid-19.
The drugs, named Molnupiravir and Sotrovimab, are anti-viral medications made available to the most at-risk individuals who have tested positive for covid.
Individuals with conditions such as cancer and other serious illnesses that affect the immune system, are eligible to receive the drugs and must be assessed by an NHS medical professional in order to receive them.
Once an order has been placed, firefighters head to County Hospital and pharmacies near the Burslem area to pick up the drugs and deliver them to the patient the same day.
The whole process, from assessment to delivery of the drug, usually takes no more than five days.
So far, firefighters and technicians have carried out a total of 57 deliveries in the region during the Christmas period.
Speaking of the partnership working, Richard Williams, covid lead for the service, said: “These are vital drugs to help the most vulnerable in our society recover from this deadly virus.
“Instead of using another delivery method, we decided to pitch in and carry out the socially-distanced, covid-safe deliveries ourselves across the county.
“By deploying people smartly, this has been a relatively simple process for us to help make sure that the most in-need people of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent are kept as safe as possible from the devastating impact of this disease.”
Dr Aideen Walsh, Chair of the Staffordshire Covid Medicines Delivery Unit and Deputy Medical Director at University Hospitals of North Midlands, said: “Since the beginning of the pandemic we have made great strides in treating COVID.
“These new treatments offer a real breakthrough in the treatment of some of our most vulnerable patients who have a range of serious illnesses.
“I’d really like to thank Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service for all the help they given the NHS, including the work they are now undertaking to distribute antiviral medications. I’d also like to remind everyone that vaccination is still our most effective tool in fighting COVID-19.”
To find out more about how the fire service supports your safety, visit: Your Safety (staffordshirefire.gov.uk)