PPE supplied to GPs must be safe and effective, says RCGP

Publication date: 01 July 2020

Responding to reports that some PPE supplied to GP practices and care homes has been recalled, Professor Martin Marshall, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: “GPs and our teams are at the frontline of tackling and managing the COVID-19 virus in the community, and will continue to be for the foreseeable future. It is essential that they have access to appropriate and effective PPE equipment in order to keep themselves, their teams and their patients safe while delivering care.”

“It is clear there have been some problems with PPE procurement and supply, particularly at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, so we understand why it was necessary to use any existing stocks we had - but only if these supplies were known to be safe and fit for purpose, which GPs understood they were. We understand that now problems have been identified with some stock, they have been recalled, but moving forward every effort must be made to ensure supplies are safe before they are distributed for use by health and care professionals. 
“It is essential that we learn from this and take measures to ensure similar problems do not happen again. This is one reason the College recently co-signed a letter along with other medical leaders calling for a rapid review into the UK’s preparedness to deal with regional peaks and a potential second wave of the virus.
“It’s imperative that practices that have had to return PPE supplies are replenished with safe stocks as a matter of urgency. More widely, ensuring that GPs have access to a sustainable and adequate supply of the appropriate PPE equipment is essential to keeping GPs, patients, and the wider communities safe, and preventing a second wave of the virus.”

Further Information

RCGP Press office: 020 3188 7633/7574/7575
Out of hours: 0203 188 7659

Notes to editor

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 53,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.

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