03:56PM, Wednesday 15 April 2020
Whilst the message for most of us has been to ‘Stay home and save lives’, Marlow RFC’s Stuart Silvester has been on the frontline of the government’s response to coronavirus.
Captain Silvester has been helping to orchestrate the build of a makeshift 4,000-bed field hospital at London’s ExCel Centre over the past few weeks.
That’s now been completed and handed over, allowing NHS workers to ‘do their magic’, however, Captain Silvester has been asked to remain in position and be the ‘Ministry of Defence’s voice of reason’.
The hospital has been built to cope with the peak of the coronavirus pandemic and thousands of people are likely to receive treatment at the conference centre turned critical care unit. It is to be staffed by a combination of NHS medical personnel and the military.
Captain Silvester writes: “My role during the inception of this facility was to provide military advice and guidance, whilst conducting strategic planning across 16 different workstreams to deliver this High dependency Unit. Daily the main effort, whilst planning, was to bring together command and control of all activity during the build phase then conduct a robust handover to KPMG and the Tier One contractor Mace.
“Once this was complete I focused my efforts on some of the key problem areas, such as Medical Logistics and Mortuary Affairs to help the contract team develop a level of understanding how to operate in the clean and dirty environment.
"Finally when the military and military support could do no more in support for our NHS counterparts I prepared to leave and allow the clinical teams to do their magic receiving patients.”
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