HAMPSHIRE civic chiefs have called on more tests and PPE for carers fighting coronavirus at a local level.

Care workers sleeping in caravans at Shedfield Lodge have been praised for their dedication in fighting and stopping the spread of coronavirus.

The home is currently free from infection, however, boss, Andrew Geach says he has been asked to provide beds to ease struggling hospitals.

He reports to be worried about putting existing residents at risk of infection and about limited PPE for carers.

Now, Lib Dem councillor for Whiteley and Shedfield, Jonathan Fern has emphasised the urgent need for tests and increased resources at a local level.

Commenting on the situation Cllr Fern, said: "The staff at Shedfield Lodge are doing an incredible job and I hope they get the coronavirus tests they so urgently need.

"The dedication they are showing towards the current residents is to be commended, especially as they are also isolating themselves from their families to prevent the potential further spread of coronavirus.

"It is worrying that Shedfield Lodge has been asked to take additional patients from overstretched local hospitals, given that potentially infected patients may be brought into an environment which is currently free from coronavirus. I can understand their concerns and it reinforces the urgent need for tests, PPE and increased resources at local level.

"These are worrying times and it just goes to show the incredible pressure the NHS is under nationally in the fight to stop the spread of this devastating virus."

As previously reported seven carers are staying in five caravans between them.

However, they have heating, wifi, television and food and "seem as happy as can be under the circumstances".

MP for Meon Valley, Flick Drummond, added: "If staff at Shedfield Lodge need equipment or help and advice to take extra residents during this crisis then I ask them to get in touch so I can help.

I would like to thank everyone in the social care sector who are working so hard to help alleviate the pressure on the NHS at this time – it’s a vital job."