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A Lifesaving Service

The National Health Service is currently under unprecedented levels of scrutiny and stress as they act as the first responders during the coronavirus outbreak. In times like these, we think it is important to take a moment and recognise the vital work of the NHS.

While a great deal of focus has rightly  been placed on keeping people out of hospital – on flattening the curve of the virus and lowering the number of individuals who need treatment at any one time – we should keep in mind the tireless and committed work of doctors, nurses, and anyone who works around or within a hospital. The NHS has been saving lives – and risking exposure to the virus – since it arrived in the UK, and will continue to do so in the coming months.

 

Everyday Heroism

At Bywaters we work with a number of hospitals and NHS organisations across London, and so we see a lot of the work they do first hand. Across client hospitals like University College London Hospital, Guys’ and St Thomas’ Hospitals, Great Ormond Street Hospital, and more, the response to COVID-19 has been selfless, responsive, and necessary.

Front-line staff, and those who have contact with patients in any capacity, are risking infection day-in and day-out to keep these vital public services running – and they aren’t letting this difficult time get them down, either. Ben Williams, Bywaters’ point of contact at King’s College Hospital, highlights the sense of camaraderie and indomitable spirit that runs throughout the NHS:

“Here at Kings – and across the NHS – everyone is putting in a fantastic effort to tackle the coronavirus. Changes are happening every day and everyone is taking it in their stride. Everyone is chipping in to help, from consultants to doctors, nurses to HCAs, even the Director of Nursing, and everyone has a smile on their face.”

This kind of commitment should be a great comfort as we place our collective trust in the health service throughout the coming months. It has certainly been a great reassurance to us to see this attitude when we attend NHS sites to carry out our waste collections and sustainability services.

 

Sustainable Healthcare

While other news is no doubt at the forefront of everybody’s minds, today also marks NHS Sustainability Day, an annual day for the NHS and Health professionals to showcase how they are driving sustainability and celebrate their achievements.

At the heart of these are the NHS Sustainability Awards, which will be announced this afternoon, starting at 3pm. Awarded to recognise achievements in sustainability across a variety of different categories, it is important that the NHS continues to recognise the accomplishments of the past year, especially in such trying circumstances. In order to reduce the environmental impact of the awards – and, now, to comply with governmental recommendations about social distancing –the announcement of the winners will be streamed online, with no physical awards ceremony.

 

Celebrating Excellence

After an extremely successful 2018, in which Bywaters client hospitals won in four categories, this year three of our clients have made the final shortlist: University College London Hospitals, for their work in driving staff engagement; Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, for their work in waste; and King’s College Hospital, for their work in sustainable disposal of clinical material.

Each of these Trusts has done important work in advancing the sustainability of NHS operations, and Bywaters wishes each of them luck in these afternoon’s proceedings.

 

A National Treasure

If the past weeks and months have highlighted anything for us here at Bywaters, it is that we are privileged to work alongside the NHS. Across our partnerships with hospitals and Trusts we have seen the UK’s health service approach all challenges – whether environmental or medical – with fearless commitment and humbling selflessness. We are proud to continue supporting them in 2020.

 

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