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A London bus stop during the COVID-19 pandemic. A London bus approaches a bus stop with a notice saying 'Not in Service'. The bus stop displays a public information poster about coronavirus ;

Working together to tackle COVID-19

King’s research excellence in virology, immunology, biomedical engineering and mental health, coupled with its close partnerships with NHS Trusts in south London has enabled it to undertake new research to combat the pandemic and its effects.

By working at pace to improve diagnostics and care for COVID-19, King’s used data from the ZOE COVID Symptom Study app to improve understanding of symptoms, and rapidly scaled up testing capacity as a Department of Health and Social Care official partner laboratory.

With intensive care patients cut off from family and friends, Life Lines provided an invaluable virtual connection with loved ones via tablet. Supported by King’s Health Partners, Life Lines exemplifies the power of partnership, growing from a local idea to a nationwide initiative in just four weeks. A collaboration between Professor Louise Rose, Professor of Critical Care Nursing at the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care, Dr Joel Meyer, critical care consultant at Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and Michel Paquet, CEO of virtual care platform Aetonix, Life Lines has now enabled over 52,000 visits in hospitals across the UK. 

Joel Meyer and Louise Rose holding tablet devices outside St Thomas' Hospital in London.

King’s staff and students are supporting the NHS response in London and beyond. Many clinical academics volunteered for frontline roles, including in the Nightingale Hospital at London’s ExCel Centre, while students from our Health Faculties graduated early or completed extended placements to provide additional capacity for the NHS. Alongside this, staff from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience are providing psychological support within South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.

The King’s community has also shared time, skills and resources with those most in need. To combat the PPE shortage, students and staff from the School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences worked around the clock to 3D-print face shields for Guy’s & St Thomas’ hospitals. This is just one example of the many ways students, staff and alumni have responded to COVID-19 by supporting their local communities in London, across the country, and throughout the world.

Our scientists, academics and researchers are at the forefront of the global response to COVID-19, from ground-breaking research to identify new symptoms to ensuring our local communities have access to routine testing to help reduce the spread of the virus.– Professor Reza Razavi, Vice President & Vice Principal (Research),King’s College London


With grateful thanks to our partners, colleagues and all King’s staff, students and alumni who contributed their energy, time and expertise to King’s response to the pandemic.

Aetonix | Bray Leino | BT | Department of Health & Social Care | Gatsby Charitable Foundation | Google | Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust | iMakr | King’s Health Partners | King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust | PI Supply | South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust | The True Colours Trust | Viapath | ZOE

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