Covid-19 - PPE and Infection Control
The Supply Chain
This remains one of the highest priorities in terms of ensuring practices have an adequate supply and also the ongoing question about the level of PPE you require in general practice.
NHSE have now set up a webpage to deal with the supply of PPE with information for primary care as follows:-
Additional supplies of PPE equipment continue to be made available to wholesalers that routinely supply to GPs, dentists, pharmacies, social care and hospices
Regional NHS leadership teams are working with individual trusts to support mutual aid and redistribution of supplies to meet greatest clinical need
Local Resilience Forums (LRFs) have received a push of PPE supplies to respond to local spikes in need, including those in social care and primary care, where there are current blockages in the supply chain. The PPE stock provided to LRFs is to support urgent need in vital services which are not linked to the NHS Supply Chain. This PPE is intended to support service providers which have exhausted their usual routes for PPE and there remains an urgent need for additional stock.
PPE Portal for accessing urgent supplies
On 26th May 2020 the government gave details of for their PPE Portal initiative to enable GPs and small care homes to order emergency supplies by registering on the PPE Portal . The PPE portal is an emergency top-up system. You should continue using your business-as-usual and wholesaler routes to access PPE. You should only use the PPE portal for additional PPE if needed.
GP's are able to place multiple orders weekly, up to the following limits: -
- GPs with fewer than 8,000 patients can order 100 IIR masks, 200 visors, 200 aprons and 400 gloves (200 pairs) per week.
- GPs with 8,000 patients or more can order 200 IIR masks, 200 visors, 400 aprons and 800 gloves (400 pairs) per week.
PPE ordered from the portal is free of charge.
Orders will be delivered by Royal Mail within:
48 hours for orders placed before 1pm
72 hours for orders placed after 1pm
Call the customer service team on 0800 876 6802 if you have any questions about using the PPE portal.
The BMA has launched a 24/7 emergency support helpline for doctors who find their PPE is inadequate and need urgent advice. Call the PPE hotline on 0300 123 1233.
PPE & Infection Control Resources
Public Health England (PHE) have a guidance page covering PPE .
There is also a PPE hub set up on the government website to cover guidance on PPE and Infection Control across all healthcare settings.
One of the most important things about PPE is how we put this on and take it off - if done incorrectly you might as well not wear it.
Click here for a helpful video produced by a Leeds GP.
PHE have also produced a video for PPE
PHE have a page for Infection Prevention Control that includes details on PPE along with a table of recommended PPE for Primary Care (See illustration below)
The Infection Prevention Society (IPS) also have a wealth of Covid-19 resources that include awareness training, patient leaflets, guidance in particular settings and strategies for managing PPE shortages.
PPE Covid-19 Guidance for Home visits
Please click this image to access our document.
PHE have also updated their PPE detail for non aerosol gas procedures and have produced posters to demonstrate the donning and doffing. Please click on the images below to download and print as required.
The RCGP also have a webpage dedicated to PPE.