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Care company to create 10,000 new jobs to meet coronavirus demand

Health-tech firm Cera said it hopes to hire people made redundant by industries worst affected by the crisis such as hospitality.

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Cera is creating 10,000 jobs to help the estimated nine million Brits over 70 asked to isolate during the Covid-19 pandemic (Joe Giddens/PA)

Cera is creating 10,000 jobs to help the estimated nine million Brits over 70 asked to isolate during the Covid-19 pandemic (Joe Giddens/PA)

Cera is creating 10,000 jobs to help the estimated nine million Brits over 70 asked to isolate during the Covid-19 pandemic (Joe Giddens/PA)

A home care company has announced the creation of 10,000 new jobs to help battle the coronavirus pandemic – and wants those facing redundancy to apply.

Cera, which was only founded in 2016, plans to increase its workforce six fold from 2,000 to 12,000, with its new staff ready to start work in just 10 days through its online training programme.

It expects a surge in demand as an estimated nine million Britons over 70 face weeks of self-isolation to protect themselves from the virus.

It is the latest company to announce a mass recruitment drive to meet demand generated by the coronavirus crisis, with some of the UK’s biggest supermarkets creating an estimated 20,000 jobs in the last week.

Cera uses digital and data analytics to try and improve its service and has created an app to provide up-to-date health information of service users to their family members.

In the last month, it has raised £50 million through loans and investment to finance expansion and the roll out of its new online platform.

Chief executive Dr Ben Maruthappu is hoping those who may have lost or be at risk of losing their jobs in the hospitality, catering, fitness, travel and cleaning industries will take on the new roles.

He has promised that the new staff will be retained even after the pandemic eases.

It is feared many hundreds of thousands of people could lose their jobs due to measures designed to contain Covid-19 such as the closure of pubs, restaurants and cafes.

Dr Maruthappu, who is also the company’s co-founder, told PA: “The vast majority of these new roles will be as front-line carers, of which there are two types.

“The first are professional carer roles, which include providing regulated home care, such as help with aspects of daily living including eating, drinking and medication.

“The second are support carer roles, focused on providing assistance such as shopping and companionship.

“Both of these roles will be community based and will involve visiting people in their own homes – we also have select number of office-based support roles, tasks include scheduling calls and visits for users and providing advice and leadership for our carers.”

Cera’s services are commissioned by the NHS and local authorities and also provide self-funded care, Dr Maruthappu said, with carers earning up to £600 per week.

He added the company was following Public Health England’s guidance on infection control, and providing its staff with personal protective equipment to prevent them bringing the virus into the homes of clients.

“We prioritise the health and wellbeing of our users and colleagues at all times, and especially now,” he said.

Jobs are being created across the country but with the majority of roles concentrated in London, King’s Lynn, Norwich, Stowmarket and Peterborough.

Many jobs will also be created in Derbyshire, Old Stratford, Nottinghamshire, Staffordshire, Cumbria, Lancashire, Wiltshire, Essex, Kent, and Abercynon.

Dr Maruthappu said: “The majority of staff we take on will live local to the communities they will be supporting.

“We also use technology to minimise travel between home care visits, so carers can spend more time caring and making a difference to people’s lives.”

He added: “For individuals we cannot place, for example due to geographical reasons, we will share their application with small home care providers in need of staff, provided consent has been granted, in our effort to create a community across social care – everyone is in this together, and together we can care better.”

Those interested in applying should visit Cera’s website or go to BecomeACarer.co.uk.

All applicants will need to undergo a criminal record background check.

PA