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Travel industry staff targeted for NHS vaccine rollout jobs

Travel industry staff left temporarily out of work as a result of Covid-19 are being targeted by the NHS to help with the rollout of the vaccine that could help contain the pandemic.

The government published its plan to vaccinate tens of millions of people by the spring yesterday, including the creation of 50 vaccination centres across the UK.

Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust is seeking non-clinical staff to help at its  vaccine centres across Hertfordshire and West Essex and in Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes.

Paid roles include front of house staff who are responsible for patient check-in, pod allocation and patient queries on the day; stewards and marshals responsible for patient flow management, and jobs for people to manage post vaccination observation areas and provide basic life support if required.

Elliot Howard-Jones, chief executive of the trust, said the customer service and people skills of those working in the travel industry would be beneficial to the roles.

Speaking to Travel Weekly, he said: “When the vaccine is rolled out further, more people will be able to travel, so these temporary jobs could be ideal for people working in the travel industry who can then return to their roles.

“It’s a great chance to be part of the vaccine programme that will help contain the Covid-19 pandemic.”

Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust covers about two million people and needs to hire around 1,100 non-clinical staff for the project. Howard-Jones is hopeful of striking a deal with an airline to redeploy cabin crew while they’re not flying, and said trusts in other areas were also recruiting for positions.

He added: “The Covid-19 vaccination programme has now begun, and the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine is already being made available to people aged 80 and over. The news that the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine has now also been approved for use in the UK is a tremendous boost to our efforts to combat Covid-19, saving lives and helping our communities to return to a more normal way of life.

“If you are currently not working clinically but have time to offer, your NHS needs your help. Covid-19 vaccination centres are up and running in a variety of settings and locations across Hertfordshire and west Essex, with more planned to open very soon. Each centre needs to be staffed by a team of people in a variety of roles, including preparing and administering the vaccine and observing people after they have received it.

“We have a range of paid roles offered on a flexible basis, including outside of usual working hours to fit with other responsibilities. By coming forward, you will be part of a team helping to deliver the largest and most important vaccination programme in the history of the NHS – and will help to ensure that the health service can continue to support everyone who needs it.”

Those interested in the roles should contact hct.covidimms@nhs.net.

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