Virgin Atlantic and easyJet cabin staff to work in U.K. Nightingale COVID-19 hospitals

On the day that easyJet announced it has grounded all its aircraft, the U.K. government has announced that it will be inviting furloughed staff from both Virgin Atlantic and easyJet to take up non-clinical positions in five National Health Service (NHS) “field” or “Nightingale Hospitals” to be located throughout the U.K. including London, Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow and Cardiff.

The NHS Nightingale Hospitals are named in memory of Florence Nightingale, one of the very first female nurses who worked tirelessly among wounded soldiers in field hospitals during the Crimea War of 1853-1856 and who is seen as the founder of modern nursing.

The temporary Nightingale Hospital in London will initially be equipped with 500 beds but will be perfectly capable of increasing capacity to 4,000 patients at any one time. Many airline staff have received considerable first aid training and will have an excellent work ethic and aptitude to working in such a critical environment. The positions, though being paid for through the U.K. government’s retention scheme, are voluntary, though these volunteers will not be expected to be working on the “front line” but instead will assist medical professionals and the general running of the hospitals, such as changing beds and other non-clinical tasks, etc. 

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