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GPs have told Pulse of buying their own higher grade PPE to protect staff as the new Omicron Covid variant is sweeping over the country.
Current infection prevention and control (IPC) Government guidance recommends ‘face coverings or surgical masks (Type II or IIR) to prevent the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory infectious agents in health and care settings’.
Dr Lizzie Toberty, North East GP and Doctors Association GP lead, told Pulse: ‘Two years into the pandemic, we should definitely have better PPE…. And surely health and safety laws would say that there is a responsibility on the NHS to provide adequate steps to keep us safe. And I don’t think that that’s there at the moment.’
She said: ‘It shows a disdain for staff, that in the same week Boris Johnson sent out a letter thanking us, we’re not being provided with the basics to enable us to look after our own health and therefore look after our patients.’
She also said it should be done centrally ‘from a practical perspective’, as she struggled to know which FFP3 mask was the right one when looking for herself.