Calls for extension of PPE supplies to care sector

time:2023-06-01 10:33:14 source:CBS News

The Jersey Care Federation (JCF) is calling on the government to extend its provision of Covid-19 personal protective equipment (PPE) for carers.

The government supplied PPE to the care sector when there were global shortages during the pandemic but provision was expected to stop at the end of January.

The JCF wants provision extended beyond this point to protect "the health of vulnerable people".

In response, Ross Barnes said there was "no set date" for ending free PPE.

The head of Non-Clinical Support Services for Health and Community Services, added: "Before the service is stopped, a review will be carried out by Ministers, HCS and Public Health colleagues, which will consider the impact on the care sector.

"However, until an informed decision is reached, the service will continue as is."

The JCF said extending the provision would "enable the care sector to safely transition to a new solution".

Cheryl Kenealy, JCF chairwoman, said the government's "fast action and investment during this time enabled our members to be able to safely provide care to those who needed it most".

She said: "While we understand that PPE support needs to end some time, we do not believe that time is now."

Ms Kenealy said government guidelines for carers to use PPE remained in place.

She said: "Our concern is that with spiralling costs in every area of business, that without PPE being provided some providers will cease to follow the guidelines, exposing our whole community to risk.

"While the worst of the pandemic has passed, we are struggling with various bacterial and viral infections this winter, including ongoing Covid risks."

JCF said it would like PPE provision to be extended for a further six months and for the government to provide initial funding for the creation of a centralised PPE subscription model.

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