Updated guidance on infection protection and control issued by the UK Health Security Agency reinforces the actions needed to prevent transmission of COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses.
Infection protection and control is vital across all healthcare settings to minimise staff sickness and subsequent disruption to health and care services. Staff absence across pharmacy teams is increasing due to isolation and sickness, which is impacting clinical service delivery and workload pressures on staff remaining in the workplace. Having the best infection protection and control measures in place mitigates the risks to staff and patient care.
RPS President Professor Claire Anderson said: “As our understanding of the COVID-19 pandemic evolves and new evidence emerges, we must keep pace with infection control risk assessments to keep staff as safe as possible in the pharmacy. As Omicron is so transmissible, it’s vital that measures are in place to protect staff health and help minimise staff absences, which have such an impact on workplace pressure and patient care.
“Health and care staff have shown enormous dedication to patient care over the past 21 months. Employers and the NHS must ensure they review their original risk assessments, which may not have been revisited for some time, to ensure pharmacy teams receive the support and protection they deserve in the workplace. This includes adapting to individual needs, as well as making sure that broader rules around social distancing, ventilation and use of appropriate PPE are all in place and being observed.
“It’s also vital that PCR and LFT testing is prioritised for all those working across health care services.
‘’Both employers and employees have a duty of care and responsibility to protect each other, we hope that by revisiting risk assessments and infection control measures action will be taken to ensure staff are protected.’
Read the updated infection protection guidance.
Our guidance can help you protect your team, with the latest information about risk assessments, PPE, social distancing and more.
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