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PPE and homecare workers

Personal protective equipment (PPE) describes items such as aprons, gloves, fluid repellent surgical masks and goggles. 

The government has produced guidance for homecare workers on using PPE.  It recommends that homecare workers, including Personal Assistants (PAs), use PPE regardless of whether the client has any symptoms of Covid-19.  The type of PPE required will depend on the tasks being carrying out and if the social distancing rules can be maintained.

Recommendations on how often PPE needs to be changed

In general, items that are single use only are:

  • disposable gloves
  • disposable plastic aprons
  • fluid-repellent (Type IIR) surgical mask

Single use items should be disposed of immediately after completing a task and after each home visit.

Supporting individuals with learning disabilities, mental health issues, autism and dementia

Putting on and taking off PPE

PPE is only effective when it is put on and taken off properly, combined with good hand hygiene and other precautions such as avoiding touching your hands and face.

Once the PPE has been taken off it should immediately be disposed of in sealed rubbish bags. These bags should be placed into another bag, tied securely and kept separate from other waste. It should be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in the usual household waste bin.

Public Health England has produced some training resources on using PPE:

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