Sewing for NHS nurses
Across the Globe, appreciation of the efforts of medical and carer staff has never been higher as they continue to support those affected by the Covid 19 virus and their families. Many businesses and individuals are also doing what they can to help and Lucy Electric's team is no exception. One example is Lisa Robinson Project Manager at Lucy Electric who has been making wash bags for Nurses working on the front line at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and the Churchill Hospital in Oxford.
Lisa previously studied for a Ba Hon degree in fashion and has put her sewing skills into practise by helping nurses at these two hospitals. The washbags are needed so any clothing (scrubs & uniform ) that is potentially contaminated isn't allowed to spread the virus in the car or houses when nurses are returning home.
These beautifully made washbags are made from a material that can withstand a 60 degree wash and are fully lined. When a nurse has finished a shift he or she simply puts the scrubs in the washbag and loads them in the wash together. This vastly reduces the chance of cross contamination.
So far Lisa has sent 50 washbags to nurses, is in the process of sewing more and by the end of this weekend 100 of Lisa’s washbags will be in the hands of nurses around the country. Lisa’s sister is a front line National Health Service worker at the Queen Elizabeth in Birmingham Hospital working in intensive care so for Lisa this is a very personal and practical way in which she can help her sister and so many others.
She has just received more material and will continue to make more bags as demand is high. All the washbags are made free of change and Lisa pays for all the postage. Well done Lisa and keep up the fantastic work you’re doing. We are sure the nurses are so grateful for your help.
Folding at Home – Tackling Covid-19
We have been reporting on the many amazing and varied things that the Lucy team are doing around the world to help support those working to defeat the Covid 19 pandemic. Sometimes this involves doing things very different to work but on other occasions the skillsets we develop at work can be harnessed to help make a real difference.
One such example of this comes from Chris Ireland who is a longstanding member of the IT department. Chris is helping the Folding @ Home project which is using distributed processing to look at proteins and their interactions of various diseases. Currently they are focused on COVID-19. Chris writes:-
'I’ve been helpinga scientist working on COVID-19. While thismight sound like a tricky thing to do; its actually something that any of us with a home computer canattempt. I'm running a program on my personal gaming PC that is using all the spare CPU and GPU runtime to perform calculations that are part of a distributed computing project for simulating protein dynamics, including the process of protein folding and the movements of proteins.
It’s a fairly simple concept that has grown to become a massive beast. You install a program on your home PC, this uses the Processor and Graphics card when you are not using it for other purposes to run calculations for the Folding @ Home project.
Scientists and Universities provide “Work Units” (WUs) for processing. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, so many people have signed up to help and start processing WUs; they simply ran out of bandwidth to download and upload WUs and results to computers. Tech companies have now donated servers and bandwidth to help distribute WUs so they can now process even more.
To try and put this into some sort of context, if you take the worlds 7 fastest supercomputers running at their maximum speed and combine them into one, that is the same computing power currently available within the Folding @ Home project. In geek speak that’s over 1.5 ExaFlops (To match what a 1 ExaFlop computer system can do in just one second, you'd have to perform one calculation every second for 31,688,765,000 years!!)'
You might be wondering why the project is called “Folding @ Home” Folding refers to the way human protein folds in the cells that make up your body. We rely on the proteins to keep us healthy and they assemble themselves by folding. But when they misfold, there can be serious consequences to a person’s health.
The project has already identified 50 compounds that interact with COVID-19 andthey may form part of a treatment. For more information or to install on your personal computer Chris advises that we have a look at https://foldingathome.org/
Thanks are due to Chris for supporting and participating in this valuable research - and explaining it in words we can understand!
Lucy Electric Thailand Donate to assist local Hospital and Orphanage
The Covid 19 virus understandably continues to dominate CSR work across Lucy Group where it is possible and safe to do so. As is widely reported, the demand for essential resources has placed several items in short supply for some front line health and care workers along with those in need.
LET have been able to help out by donating some PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) to the local Pluak Daeng Hospital, this PPE included face masks, gloves and hand sanitiser. The nurses at the hospital were incredibly grateful for the donation which will help them keep safe when looking after patients.
Lucy Electric Thailand has also been very aware of the difficulties that this pandemic has caused local charities which are now unable to raise much needed funds through their normal fund raising activities. Charities like the Camillian Social Centre look after the most vulnerable in society - orphans effected by aids. Staff at LET, aware of their need donated essential Items including hand sanitiser and household cleaning materials and which helps to maintain hygiene standards and for the staff to protect themselves and children from the risk of contracting the virus.