Nurse fundraises to buy iPads for Lancaster hospitals

A Lancashire Covid 19 nurse has raised almost £60,000  to buy iPads to allow patients to speak with their loved ones on coronavirus wards.

Friday, 1st May 2020, 3:45 pm
Leona in her PPE

Leona Harris has been working gruelling 13 hour days in a Covid19 hospital ward where she has been treating poorly patients in a bid to beat the killer virus.

But after witnessing heartbreaking scenes with some patients unable to speak with friends and family on the sealed off wards and people passing away without any contact she decided she had to act.

She posted an appeal on social media and was inundated with offers of help and pleas from other desperate COVID nurses to get hold of an iPad for their wards.

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Leona joined forces with the staff of Lancaster based Simpson Millar Solicitors to launch the #staytogether campaign and in less than a week she raised £30k and bought 70 iPads. (£27,500 private donations and £2,500 online)

She has since raised a total of £28,000 online on a Just Giving page and will be using the extra monies to buy more iPads.

After initially helping only her hospital the scheme proved so successful she is now helping hospital wards across the county and further afield and has helped hundreds of patients to stay in touch with loved ones.

iPads have already been delivered to the specialist Lancaster based Orchard hospital - which treats patients with mental health issues and disabilities - (pictured) and they arranging for delivery of two more iPads to the Royal Lancaster Infirmary next week.

Leona, who lives in Rossendale, said: “There is a massive need for these iPads as I have been contacted by nurses and people from hospitals from all over the UK.

“It’s like a virtual hug for the patient and the family and gives them a real boost.”

Anyone who wants to donate can go to www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/staytogether