14 November 2014
When 20,000 dental patients in Nottinghamshire were recalled for tests this week, Red Cross support line volunteers turned out to help field hundreds of calls.
The largest recall in NHS history was prompted by concerns about infection control.
It’s claimed a local dentist posed an infection risk to patients because he did not wash his hands or sterilise equipment between appointments. The death of one of his patients is being investigated by police.
Our volunteers have been covering 12-hour shifts to provide support and information – and reassurance – to worried callers. Approximately 1,300 calls were received on the first day alone.
Laura Bowen, emergency planning officer, said: “This must have been a very stressful time for all those who had to call in.
“But our volunteers are specially trained to offer the best advice and support, and were a great help.”
The Red Cross has a core of trained telephone support volunteers throughout the UK.
In the event of a major emergency, we can set up support line within four hours – as happened following the London bombings in 2007.
Find out more about our telephone support service.