Staff use 32k items of PPE a day

STAFF at Swansea Bay University Health Board go through some 32,000 items of personal protective equipment (PPE) each day during the coronavirus crisis.

A decision-making group meets daily to oversee the supply of PPE, and there are PPE “leads” and “deputies” in every hospital unit.

A report before the health board on April 30 said it currently had adequate levels of PPE, with units reporting 24 to 48 hours’ worth of stock.

It said: “The health board aim is to reach levels of 24-hour supply at each ward level, an additional 48 hours’ supply in local stores at unit level, and an additional 48 hours’ supply in central stores at headquarters.”

The report added that local manufacturers and suppliers had been identified as potential sources of gowns, visors, aprons and sanitisers.

An order of 200,000 masks is expected next week, with a further 300,000 later in May or in June.

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There are also arrangements for the re-use of some PPE, where safe to do so, and further guidance is being finalised.

There is a shortage of visors which have a specific European mark, known as CE.

Staff have been using visors without the CE mark for obvious reasons, but this lack of CE branding is considered a compliance risk for the health board.

Board members were therefore asked to approve a proposal endorsing the use of PPE without a CE mark, as long as it had been assessed beforehand.

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