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Drilling Systems’ employee answers NHS call for personal protective equipment

The Drilling Systems’ team is renowned for going above and beyond to help customers – now one of our employees has done the same for the NHS.

Drilling Systems’ Head of Tech Support, Keith Medhurst and his wife Ellie, have manufactured 150 protective face masks for the neonatal intensive care unit at Southampton Hospital.

Keith and Ellie have a close relationship with the unit after tragically losing their daughter in 2018. Chloe was born prematurely at 24 weeks and was cared for by nurses at the neonatal unit until she lost her fight for life six months later.

Having stayed in touch with nurses on the unit ever since, Keith and Ellie were keen to support the team there during the coronavirus pandemic.

Keith explains: “We spent every day at the neonatal unit at Southampton Hospital while our daughter was there and built some extremely strong friendships with the nurses and doctors on the unit. When news broke around personal protective equipment (PPE) shortages in the NHS, we got in touch to see if we could help the unit and they eventually accepted our offer. We have a 3-D printer at home so were able to print protective masks from online designs approved by the NHS. Each mask takes around an hour to print and a few minutes to assemble so we fitted in this work whenever we could. Although it’s taken us a few weeks to complete 150 masks, I’m really pleased with the result and we handed them over last week. They were very happy to have the masks as spare PPE kit to use as needed. It’s nice to be able to show our gratitude and give something back to the wonderful team at Southampton – they do such amazing work.”

Kevin Franklin, Chief Executive Officer at 3T Energy Group, which includes Drilling Systems, said: “Keith has done a fantastic job answering the call for PPE from the NHS. We are all very proud of him.”