How fire service staff are helping in the fight against pandemic as they join in launch of Nightingale vaccination centre

From fighting blazes to battling a pandemic – the skills of fire service staff are now being used to help protect lives through the North East's newest mass vaccination site.

Monday, 25th January 2021, 5:20 pm

The hospital joins the Centre for Life in Newcastle as a mass vaccination site for the region, joining local hubs set up within in communities.

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Queues outside of Sunderland's Nightingale Hospital as Covid vaccinations begin

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The hospital car park of Nightingale North East was busy as a line of people waited to enter the facility at the instruction of security staff on the door.

The service’s staff have stepped up as volunteers, with its workers taking on supporting roles at the centre, assisting patients as they arrive and leave to help the sessions run smoothly.

Their efforts join those from side the many other volunteers and staff from the NHS and other health partners.

Peter Heath, Deputy Chief Fire Officer of the service, said: “Fire and Rescue Services are at the heart of every community and as a service we strive to support the fight against deaths from coronavirus and improve community safety.

"If we can play even a small part in supporting our NHS and other health colleagues we will.

"The pressure and challenges they face, need all of us to do what we can to support them.

"Here at TWFRS we remain ready, willing and able to play our part in that fight.”

TWFRS also has staff volunteers training to support delivery of vaccinations through GP surgeries in the Newcastle area as continuing with essential food supplies to the most vulnerable.

It says it will work to support the NHS, Health and other partners were we can to support community safety and the roll out of the vaccination programme and community testing for coronavirus.

It became one of 33 new mass vaccination sites to launch on the same day, with 50 mass sites now up and running and 1,300 vaccination locations set up in total.

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