Infection control and PPE
Last updated July 19th 2021
It remains absolutely vital that you wear the correct PPE to stop the spread of Coronavirus.
When you are working at our sites, whether in a clinical or non-clinical area, please regularly think about whether you and your colleagues are wearing the correct PPE. Every moment counts, every encounter matters.
As a reminder, you should wear full PPE (mask, apron, safety glasses) in clinical areas at all times and gloves in certain situations (new guidance from 14th June). It is important to remember to change gloves and apron after every patient contact.
In non-clinical areas you should follow these seven steps:
- Maintain 2 metre spacing
- Wear masks at all times
- You can pass within 1 metre of a person when wearing a mask without needing to wear eye protection (this must not exceed 1 minute)
- If someone stops to talk with you, immediately ask them to step back 2 meters
- If you are within 2 metres of someone for more than 1 minute then both mask and eye protection are required
- You do not need to wear a mask if in a room by yourself, but you must have a mask on if sharing the room. Be ready to put a mask on if someone enters
- Eating and drinking in a designated area – you must maintain 2 metre spacing between yourself and others
If you are unsure of our PPE guidance or have any questions please speak to your line manager as a matter of urgency.
The gloves are off (with exceptions)
The Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) team routinely check all new guidance as it emerges. From Monday 14 June staff will no longer be required to routinely wear gloves in the patient setting, unless they are anticipating contact with blood/body fluid, or the patient has a known infection (COVID-19 or otherwise).
This clarification in national guidance is aimed at improving hand hygiene, as routine glove use has been identified as a potential route for transferring infection within the clinical area. So please continue to follow best practice hand hygiene when you’re not wearing gloves.
How can I report a breach?
If you notice others who are not wearing PPE correctly, we are encouraging you to politely discuss this with them in the first instance. In many cases it will be a simple mistake and they will be grateful for the reminder.
If this approach doesn’t work, or there are repeated breaches, please discuss this with your line manager and complete a Datix submission.
Other useful Infection Control documents
- Guidance for wearing face coverings on Trust premises
- Guidance for wearing a mask in the workplace
- Download the Practical guidance to wearing a mask fact sheet for more details.
- Find out where PPE stations are located at Trust sites.
- Standard operating procedures for PPE can be found in the Clinical Guidance section. It’s important to remember to apply basic infection prevention control protocols that you all know and do as part of your everyday clinical roles, alongside the guidance which is there to support you.
For any queries about infection control and PPE please contact the Trust’s Infection Control Team on 0113 85 55957 or you can email firstname.lastname@example.org. There is an answer machine in operation which will direct you to the colleague on call.
- Infection control policy from Monday July 19th
- Frequently asked questions from our Infection Control Team - updated December 2020
- Guidance on the use of PPE
- Fit checking
- Ordering PPE and scrubs
- Car sharing - infection control guidance
- Working across sites and split shifts
- Public Health England advice and hand hygiene
- Policy on uniforms
- Waste management and the disposal of PPE