Swindon’s heroes are given the red carpet treatment at First City Nursing

By Anita Jaynes on 23 December, 2020

Over 350 home care staff who have spent the last 10 months on the frontline of the fight against Covid-19 have been given the red carpet treatment by Swindon-based First City Nursing and Care.

Staff at First City Nursing have taken a leading role in protecting the most vulnerable in the community and reducing the spread of the disease, and so the management team at First City Nursing have dedicated the run up to Christmas as a time to stop briefly and thank every single member of staff individually for their efforts and present them with a commemorative Care pin badge, Heroes chocolates and a Marks and Spencer voucher.

Since March, First City Nursing staff have been involved in the care of large numbers of suspected or confirmed Covid-19 cases and also worked closely with Great Western Hospital, Swindon Borough Council and other care providers based in Swindon to bring patients home from Great Western Hospital after discharge. This had a significant impact, freeing up hospital beds for those who needed them

First City Nursing’s focus on protecting staff, patients and their families through rigorous safety procedures, ensuring everyone has enough PPE and sharing knowledge and best practice with others involved in care, has effected the overall impact that Covid-19 has had on Swindon.

Stephen Trowbridge, Managing Director of First City, said, “The resilience of our staff has been incredible through the pandemic and I’ve been impressed and humbled to see them all step up and put those who are unwell and vulnerable at the forefront. 

“Many of them won’t admit that they have been heroes throughout this, however people have put themselves forward to work in these new and unknown circumstances.  If it wasn’t for their flexibility and dedication, I’m confident that we couldn’t have achieved all that we have done and there would have been more cases spread through Swindon.”

First City Nursing works with eleven care providers based in Swindon to support the town’s most vulnerable residents. The resilience of care staff across the borough and their willingness to go the extra mile despite the challenges has been pivotal in minimising any delays from hospital and ensuring people could be supported at home.

Councillor Brian Ford, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults and Health, said, “The commitment and dedication shown by the entire health and social care workforce in Swindon, including First City and their partners, has been nothing short of astonishing.

“I have been so impressed by the way they have responded to the considerable challenge of COVID-19 and maintained good quality services to vulnerable members of our community in these difficult, unprecedented times. They are all heroes in my eyes.”

Flexibility and changing the way of working has been a large part of First City Nursing’s success.  However, the dedication and commitment of the company’s workforce to improving people’s lives has shone through this difficult time.

Dan Larcombe, a Senior Carer who has been with First City for 18 months, and Philip Sharp, a Healthcare Assistant who joined at the end of April, both received a personal thank you from First City Nursing’s Head of Service Quality & Operations Jo Vranch.

Dan said, “Covid has changed the role immensely and in so many ways.  We’ve had to be able to turn on a sixpence and adapt to these fresh challenges and since March I’ve had a much wider spectrum of people to provide care for.  But I’ve always felt like I’ve been looked after, especially at the beginning of the pandemic when I could see the gap between us and the other providers we were working alongside in terms of the amount of PPE we were all being given and the communication from the top.

“It’s nice to be thanked but really I’m just doing my job.  Seeing people’s lives improve, extending their confidence and quality of life is the real gift of thanks.”

Philip added, “Joining First City Nursing was as though it was a twist of fate and meant to happen for me.  Until March this year I was a chauffeur driver but when the company I worked for went bust I wanted a change in direction.  I was nudged by a friend to consider care as I’m compassionate and want to look after people, and after that it all happened so quickly and I’m loving it.

“Working in care is absolutely wonderful. It’s all helped by all of my colleagues without exception being is so helpful and there being a very positive culture.  I was really touched to receive a thank you.  It was done beautifully and for the senior team to take time out of their busy day is amazing.”

For more information about First City Nursing and Care, visit www.firstcitynursing.co.uk.

Pictured above: Philip Sharp (left) and Silvia Papcunova with Jo Vranch