Keys to The O2 handed over free of charge to NHS to train staff fighting COVID-19

Mobile networks continue to play a crucial role in helping the UK remain connected, enabling people to stay in touch with friends, family and colleagues.

As O2 continues to increase its network capacity and support its customers it is announced that The O2 arena has been made available as an NHS training facility, initially operating from 12th April – 29th June 2020. The staff trained will go on to work at the NHS Nightingale field hospital at ExCel London.  The NHS will be using this as an educational training facility to prepare staff and no patients will be treated on site.

The news comes as O2 recently installed additional temporary network capacity at the ExCel centre in London and Harrogate Nightingale hospital and works with the NHS Trusts to assess mobile connectivity in current and proposed hospitals across the country.  In addition, O2 is continuing to provide support for front line workers from helping a number of Blue Light services increase their data and call capacity, to monitoring critical key sites to help ensure network resilience during this period.  As demand for mobile connectivity continues, usage patterns continue to evolve.  O2’s network continues to carry high levels of voice traffic with data usage patterns also changing from general peaks during football matches to moments such as Thursday nights as the country unites to Clap For Carers in support of the NHS.

Mark Evans, CEO, O2 said; “Mobile connectivity is more important than ever before and we’re continuing to work hard to keep the country connected.  We’ve seen the highest volume of voice traffic ever carried on our network and we know how important those conversations are.  From providing additional capacity for the NHS, to working with our partners to utilise venues such as The O2, we’re committed to giving customers and key workers the network they need to keep in contact with those closest to them.”

Note to editors:

The O2 would like to make it clear that it will not be charging the NHS a hire fee for the use of the venue. Any costs incurred by the venue to provide services required by the NHS are being passed on at cost. The O2 will not profit from the NHS’s use of the venue in any way.