Nursing experts from Kingston University (KU) have been drafted in to help hospitals battling the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic in London.

Last week (May 13), KU announced that a number of their “critical care and nursing experts” had joined with colleagues from St George’s, University of London, to deliver “vital intensive care training” to frontline NHS staff amid the ongoing spread of the coronavirus.

Dr Stephen McKeever, Johannes Mellinghoff and Siby Sikhamoni, who are all members of KU’s School of Nursing in the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, were called upon to help increase the capacity of intensive care nurses at St George’s University Hospitals Foundation Trust.

There they joined KU colleague Dr Jackie McRae, who has been working as clinical lead speech and language therapist at London’s Nightingale Hospital, which was opened to help increase the capacity of intensive care beds in the UK.

In more normal times, nurses in intensive care look after patients on a one-to-one basis.

The pandemic has meant that many intensive care nurses have been forced to look take care of up to six patients at a time in some of the most difficult circumstances the job can present.

The KU professionals have been giving practical sessions in a simulation setting, plus equipping newly-qualified and experienced nurses who have not had the chance to renew their education in recent years with up-to-date critical care knowledge and practices.

Johannes thanked KU for allowing him and his colleagues to return to the frontline.

“We are committed to helping our colleagues and friends in practice at a time when resources are scarce,” he said. “I joined the profession to make a difference and I’m delighted I have the opportunity to do so.”

Siby meanwhile described the difficulties of trying to understand what other patients and carers are going through but added “we can use our experience and pass this on.”