Sellafield Nuclear Workers Receive Home Covid Tests
Following a pilot scheme, an innovative startup is providing Sellafield Ltd employees with at-home lateral flow Covid-19 testing and support.
After an accelerated two-week trial with 150 staff at the Cumbrian nuclear waste management site, Leeds-based Moore Medtech has rolled out its services to the full 5,000-strong Sellafield team of key workers. In line with government protocols for large businesses, staff will be sent rapid (15 minute) at-home tests to use every three days in order to mitigate the risk of asymptomatic employees who are currently infectious going on site.
In addition, Moore Medtech, an engineer-led work safety provider, has implemented an online programme, including a video, to train Sellafield personnel about how to carry out the testing correctly and to support any employees with test-related issues and concerns.
“With thousands of key workers providing vital services, businesses have to find a way of keeping people on site as safely as possible and this is exactly what our services have been designed to do,” explains Jamie Moore, CTO of Moore Medtech. “We were recommended to Sellafield by another large business for whom we have successfully developed remote testing, training and support services, and, in a matter of weeks, we were able to devise and implement an appropriate programme for Sellafield.
“It’s not enough for a business simply to send out test kits, personnel need to be trained to use them correctly in order to get a clear result and also be given guidance about what to do next, depending on the outcome of the test. In addition to a training video and comprehensive bespoke website, our programme at Sellafield gives employees access to two online drop-in support sessions every day, run by trained nurses, who can quickly provide assistance and answer any questions.”
Madeleine Archer, strategy lead in corporate strategy, and part of the Covid19 Recovery team at Sellafield, adds: “We don’t have the kind of business where everyone can work from home or the option of just pausing operations as some of our facilities require 24/7 supervision for nuclear safety, however, we needed to increase workforce confidence in attending work.
“Having reviewed options for testing in the workplace, we realised that the sheer number of employees would have required a very large facility and with lots of our teams on 12 hour shifts, asking them to wait for testing before they start work would make the day too long. We had heard about Moore MedTech’s home testing programme for other large organisations and this sounded like the best solution.
“We were particularly impressed by the company’s provision of an excellent support package of training and a helpline, as well as its competitive pricing for the home use kits. All parts of the programme were thoroughly trialled during the pilot, helping us to understand how we could roll out more widely – employee confidence is one of our primary drivers, so we wanted to get it right.
“The testing programme has been well-received with good up-take so far from the workforce. Moore Medtech’s support has been excellent, helping us achieve our aim of increasing employee confidence to come to work on site.”
After working in medical technology for over a decade, siblings, Jamie and Samantha Moore, set up Moore MedTech in April 2020 in response to the problems businesses and facilities management specialists were facing to provide safe work environments following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
As well as offering COVID testing services and products using FAR-UVC light technology, Moore MedTech supplies a range of cleaning products featuring its unique formula which has been tested on live COVID, is effective against spore-forming organisms and can bind to treated surfaces, giving longer-term protection against microbial contamination.