Manchester-based chefswear manufacturer Tibard has turned its hand to manufacturing hospital scrubs for the NHS to help fight coronavirus.
The availability of suitable clothing and personal protective equipment (PPE) is one particular area the NHS has been struggling with. The highly contagious nature of COVID-19 means that clothing, hygiene and protection for healthcare staff are more important now than ever before. With recently retired doctors and nurses also being called back into the health service this supply issue is being intensified.
But in times of crisis it is so important that businesses who are able to contribute to the national effort do precisely that. A great example of this is the Formula One teams utilising their sophisticated technology to aid in the production of 20,000 new ventilators for the health service.
However, as of last Monday the Government advised members of the public not to visit bars, restaurants and similar. This had a massive effect on the hospitality industry and with the enforced closures on Friday this key aspect of modern life has effectively been put on hold for the foreseeable future. Therefore, Tibard’s customers quite rightly stopped spending on their uniform.
But this left a purpose built textile factory without work at a time when our health service requires more and more clothing for its staff.
So Tibard’s managing director, Ian Mitchell, wanted to offer their services to the NHS. After all, a facility that can produce over 15,000 garments a week in the UK is a rarity.
Through one of their local fabric partners, Tibard was able to contact the NHS Supply Chain and take on any surplus orders that were required immediately. Thankfully, Tibard’s production line did not need to be altered significantly as chef jackets and trousers are similar in construction to medical scrubs. The only key difference being the fabric involved, which is lighter weight, and the garments not requiring a front fastening. That’s why Tibard is now manufacturing 10,000 scrub tops and 10,000 scrub trousers to be sent to healthcare staff across the country.
Mr Mitchell said: “We found ourselves in a rather odd position last week, with our customers not wanting clothing because their establishments were shut but at the same time we kept hearing how the NHS needed more equipment to help tackle this pandemic. It was important to all of us here at Tibard to do our part to support our medical staff and that’s why we had to offer our services.”
Businesses across the country should be analysing their function within society. The NHS is on the front line fighting this dreadful virus and it is up to businesses to do their part in whatever way they can.