Weston nurse to help fight Ebola in Sierra Leone

A nurse from Weston General Hospital will soon be deployed to Sierra Leone to help fight the Ebola epidemic in West Africa.

Malcolm Chalk, a Nurse Practitioner from Weston-super-Mare, who works in the Emergency Department of Weston General Hosptial, has volunteered to go to West Africa to help support the management of Ebola. He is due to fly out of England on 6th December.


Malcolm Chalk said: “When I qualified as a nurse, I kind of made a pledge to myself that one day I would use my nursing experience to help those in less fortunate circumstances or desperate situations.


“We are very lucky in this country to have a welfare system that we so often take for granted. Countries like Sierra Leone have nothing at the moment, their health care system has virtually collapsed and is not viable, not even for everyday illness, or for any other health problems. They are very reliant on outside help and I want to help.  


“It was looking like I might have to do all this when I retired, but it's all happening now! It's becoming a bit scary for me, but I will go.”


Malcolm continued: “It does mean that I will miss Christmas with my family but this is a cause worth giving up Christmas for.”


Malcolm is the first staff member at Weston General Hospital to volunteer to go to West Africa to help the foreign response to the epidemic.


Chris Perry, Director of Nursing, said: “I want to congratulate Malcolm for taking this amazing step in helping to care for others.  Malcolm already goes above and beyond in supporting nurses at Weston through his role with the Royal College of Nursing and this is another great example of Malcolm's commitment to caring as a nurse.  I am very proud to have Malcolm as part of our nursing team.”


After completing five days of training in the UK, Malcolm will fly out of London on 6 December to Sierra Leone. He will undergo three days of in-country training at Freetown then be sent to his base where he will commence his clinical work. He will be going to West Africa for an eight week deployment with NHS England and will return at the end of January 2015.