Kettering Hospital sets up quiet room for staff overwhelmed by coronavirus emergency

Retailers John Lewis and Tesco have donated furnishings to the new room which will act as a quiet haven for emotionally distressed staff.

Wednesday, 1st April 2020, 12:05 pm
Updated Wednesday, 1st April 2020, 12:05 pm
What the room could look like.

Kettering General Hospital is creating a quiet space where staff can go for a chat and a coffee if they feel overwhelmed by the coronavirus emergency.

The hospital’s staff are at the frontline of caring for the growing number of people who are being admitted each day with the virus.

To help them cope with the unprecedented situation, the hospital has set up the We Care team which has a focus on the staff’s welfare.

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The We Care team is now creating a comfortable space for staff and is converting part of its Prince William Education Centre into the dedicated area.

Tesco and John Lewis have donated soft furnishings, diffusers and paintings to decorate the two rooms, one of which will be used for one-to-one and the other will have an open area with seating.

We Care manager Jayne Chambers said: “This is something we feel our staff will need and we want to make somewhere comfortable where they can go. We do not want it to have a clinical feel, but rather want it to be more homely so it is conducive to being able to sit and relax.

It will be somewhere they can go and chat to a dedicated person about their mental wellbeing, or just somewhere they can go for a quiet coffee, a bit of space and a break from what they have perhaps just had to deal with.”

The hospital has been gearing itself up for what some staff have called the ‘tsnuami’ of cases that it expects to be faced with in coming days and weeks. The hospital has doubled the number of ICU beds from 15 to 30 and has also changed arrangements for some services, with blood testing now taking place at the Kettering council offices in Bowling Green Road. Guidance has also been offered for pregnant women who are due to give birth at the hospital in coming months.

So far there have been 170 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Northamptonshire but the actual figure is thought to be much higher because of the currently low levels of testing.