EFFORTS to secure protective gear for frontline NHS and care workers have been stepped up by a united front of public services.

The Sussex Resilience Forum has brought together councils, police, hospitals and the armed forces to make sure vital supplies get through to where they are needed.

As many as 35,000 vulnerable people have been identified across the county by the forum, which is coordinating the “mammoth effort” to beat the coronavirus pandemic in the county.

Concerns over whether care workers and NHS staff have been getting the right protective clothing and equipment such as masks (known as PPE) has been the most challenging.

Hove and Portslade MP Peter Kyle described a potential “perfect storm” of agency care workers visiting various residential homes to treat patients without enough PPE to protect them from getting and spreading the deadly virus.

But in recent days the forum said deliveries of PPE has been made to Sussex, and care home and agencies can call a government hotline if there are concerns about supplies.

Efforts to set up “community hubs” to make sure food and medical supplies can be delivered to vulnerable people in isolation have been set up, including in Brighton and Hove.

Assistant Chief Constable Dave Miller said planning for a pandemic was already in place as the forum has to plan for winter flu, so the county is well prepared to help those most vulnerable.

He said: “We stand united, as public services across Sussex, in support of our NHS colleagues as they work around the clock to provide vital care as we face this public health emergency.

“Across the system, our multi-agency teams are ensuring that vital resources reach those who need them most, and that the information is available to address the complex and urgent issues that have arisen from coronavirus.

“It truly is a mammoth effort and local services are working together in a way and on a scale never before seen, absolutely committed to saving lives and protecting the NHS in Sussex.

“We are all in this together and we all have our part to play to protect the NHS and save lives.

For advice on accessing council services and support in Brighton and Hove, visit: new.brighton-hove.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19.

In East Sussex visit: eastsussex.gov.uk/community/emergencyplanningandcommunitysafety/coronavirus.

In West Sussex visit: westsussex.gov.uk/campaigns/coronavirus-covid-19/#1.

Local newspapers across Newsquest are joining forces to raise money for workers at the frontline of the healthcare crisis. Please donate whatever you can, and let us give a collective, united message to our NHS workers of our huge appreciation for their efforts. You can get involved and support our campaign by sharing our appeal and telling us why you are thankful for the NHS #ThankYouNHS on social media using the link: https://www.gofundme.com/f/support-our-nhs-guardian-angels.