Dr Rinesh Parmar, DAUK’s chair spoke to The Guardian about DAUK’s #protectthefrontline campaign on PPE.
He said: “We’ve been hearing from doctors across the country that they’ve been sent different masks. This is extremely worrying for doctors, who have been tested on one type and receive another.
“Testing is time-consuming and only available in the day. Doctors have written about their fears of coming in for a nightshift and being presented with a mask that they have not been tested on.”
Retraining takes already-busy doctors away from caring for patients, said Parmar.
One intensive care nurse at a hospital in Yorkshire told the Guardian how she had had to spend £100 of her own money to buy a full FFP3 respirator mask online. In her unit on Monday, there were no masks or surgical gowns, another vital piece of PPE kit which has also been in short supply. Some staff have resorted to making makeshift PPE , sometimes with clinical waste bags.
“Enormous stress is being caused by mixed messages from surgeons, anaesthetists and management on the nature of PPE required for different tasks and different patients,” the intensive care nurse added.
A nurse at a London hospital said: “I just came back from my night shift and it’s overwhelming with the lack of PPE and a lack of nurses.
“We are doing our best to do what we can, risking our lives. But we are all getting sick and I don’t see any of the retirees signed to come back. I don’t think they will be able to cope with the amount of jobs we are having to do now. We are all fit and younger but going down with this.”