Armed Forces important role in helping with pandemic

Currently 5,300 military personnel are helping with the Covid response - the largest peacetime resilience operation ever undertaken by the UK Armed Forces.

Expertise from every corner of the military is being used to assist with 56 different operations including the vaccine rollout, NHS support and community testing.

Personnel are also working inside NHS hospitals, with around 50 medics now committed to hospitals in Kent and Essex to help cope with increasing demand. In Essex, Combat Medic Technicians (CMTs) are supporting a ‘step-down’ facility for those recovering from Covid-19.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: "Our country faces an unprecedented challenge and our Armed Forces are working hand in hand with the NHS. We will continue to bolster those on the front line as they protect and care for the most vulnerable.

"The sheer scope of the work undertaken by our Armed Forces, both in the UK and overseas, is a real testament to their resilience and willingness to be there when our country needs it."

Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir Nick Carter said: "These are really challenging times for everyone at the moment. We all have a role to play in supporting those on the frontline in the fight against the virus. As ever, the Armed Forces are there to play our part in this collective national enterprise. We are proud to do what we can to provide our expertise wherever it is most needed."