Validair Monitoring Solutions has been acknowledged a Critical Supplier by several of the company’s major customers that have operations addressing the coronavirus threat, including the NHS, life science organisations and Pharma research facilities. With many of these customers themselves designated part of the government’s Critical National Infrastructure (CNI), Validair is and an integral part of their business continuity plan and is mandated to continue its service and support functions in environmental monitoring and calibration
Uninterrupted service at Validair is made possible by years of experience in the contamination control sector and the unique position on the front line in the fight against the virus that the company finds itself in. As a supplier to laboratories, cleanrooms and other contamination-sensitive sectors including the NHS, Validair staff are used to operating with rigorous procedures. The company already has the most stringent procedures and Health & Safety directives in place to support mission-critical monitoring installations. These measures, designed for working practices in critical spaces, apply equally to dealing with Covid-19.
Steve Wake, managing Director at Validair Monitoring Systems
However, the company has chosen to rapidly escalate its procedures to add more rigor specific to the coronavirus outbreak. Managing Director, Steve Wake, explains: "It will be our NHS customers caring for people infected by the virus and our customers in the NHS supply chain who will develop and manufacture the vaccine that will win this fight. Our systems are critical on both fronts. Yet we must ensure the safety and welfare of all our staff, whilst continuing to support our customers."
Wake points out that Validair is an agile SME so can move fast. He has set up a Covid-19 Health Risk Event Leadership Team to monitor the government’s guidelines and evolve the Validair action plan accordingly. The enhanced plan covers in precise detail how the company’s Malvern office will be manned with staff on a rota, provides specific directives for staff who need to travel, introduces regular Covid-19 business status updates for Validair customers, and issues instructions to staff on social distancing while at customers’ premises to ensure everyone’s safety.
"It's great to see the healthcare, life sciences, pharmaceutical and engineering business communities joining forces to help overcome this situation – but let's not forget that as well as dealing with Covid-19, other critical medical necessities, emergencies and treatments persist," says Wake.
Validair experienced one such example at the end of March as the country was beginning to lock down. “Two of our engineers attended a front-line London NHS hospital customer to maintain and calibrate the critical alarm and environmental monitoring system,” Wake explains. “Once completed and the customer’s facility deemed compliant, our engineers asked the clinician about his plans for the afternoon. He replied: “Now that you’ve fixed my monitoring system, I can make the drugs for my patient.” That patient is a young child.”
“Naturally, we are delighted to have been able to make such an invaluable contribution,” concludes Wake, adding: “And it highlights how vital it is for all critical business services to continue during the coronavirus pandemic.”