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Lloyd Barker


When the Trust was asked to set up and provide services at the larger vaccination centres in Sussex, and to deliver a roving vaccination service for vulnerable people in care homes and those unable to leave their homes, Lloyd was tasked with overseeing the operational delivery of the programme. 

SCFT’s Deputy Chief Operating Officer, who is 43, lives in Eastbourne and has worked for the organisation since 2014, threw himself into these challenges as Director of Operations of the Vaccination Programme. 

At the start of the programme we didn’t have allocated sites or the staff in place to deliver the service,” he says, candidly. “I was tasked with leading the operational design and delivery of the programme, working alongside colleagues from the Trust, local integrated healthcare system and NHS England to secure and supply the sites, recruit and train the workforce, and implement the delivery.” 

Lloyd overcame these considerable obstacles and is delighted that his hard work is having such a transformative effect on people’s lives. 

“The positivity and energy of the staff delivering the programme is astounding, which creates a sense of community in each site / service,” he says. “This is amplified by the appreciation from members of the public and the positive feedback we receive on a daily basis. 

“I am fortunate to be able to work with a diverse group of staff from many different backgrounds and professions, from within and also outside the NHS. The diversity has meant we have all been able to learn new skills from each other and deliver a service more aligned to the communities around us.” 

Lloyd has always been proud of working for the NHS, but the way it has stepped up to tackle this pandemic has given him “a renewed appreciation of just how amazing the NHS community really is”. 

“The complexity of the programme has shown just how critical the efforts of all NHS members are to the delivery of high quality healthcare,” he says. “Without our clinical, estates, information technology, facilities, project management office, recruitment, human resources and governance colleagues, we would never have been able to achieve what we have so far.” 

The Trust has recruited 1,000 staff to help deliver the vaccination programme across Sussex. 

“This programme has really demonstrated the opportunity we have to enhance the delivery of healthcare through a more inclusive approach to recruitment,” says Lloyd. “This has enabled those without experience in healthcare to join us and really be part of the fight back against the pandemic. 

“The skills brought by our colleagues from the aviation, leisure, retail and many other industries have been invaluable, and the way our teams have welcomed and supported these staff during the transition is amazing and a reason for everyone to be proud.” 

When he allows himself to consider the future against the backdrop of everything that has happened in the past 12 months, what does Lloyd think? 

“Broadly that there is a sense of hope for everyone to get back to some element of normality, and for us all to take stock of how our lives have changed, in some ways for the better, and how this may influence the way ahead for us all,” he says. 

“Whether that’s a decision to join SCFT or the NHS for the longer term to build a career in healthcare; or a commitment to more readily acknowledge the roles our support services play in the delivery of high quality services; or whether it’s to retire for the second or third time of trying, all staff within the Trust and the NHS will always be able to look back and see how they took on the challenge and ultimately came through with flying colours.”