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  • Writer's pictureBill C

Hygiene and first aid

It is important to remember first aid has always had to consider the risk of infection, not from coronavirus (Covid 19) but from other infections such as HIV, hepatitis and other viruses or infections which have the potential to do harm.

Normal hygiene measures are known to lessen the risk of infection and should be followed.

Wear Personal protective equipment (PPE) if easily available - gloves, fluid resistant surgical mask and a plastic apron are recommended. If the responder has access to personal protective equipment (PPE) (e.g. Fluid Resistant Surgical Mask (FRSM), disposable gloves and eye protection), these should be donned before approaching within 2 metres of the patient.

Wearing PPE creates a barrier between you and the casualty. Even if you wear gloves and other PPE it is still important to wash your hands after helping someone.

If PPE are not easily available, then treat the casualty as normal but be sure to wash your hands at the earliest opportunity- every second counts and delaying help to get gloves can have a detrimental effect on the outcome for your casualty.

Wash your hands after any contact with someone.

Following current government advice around handwashing is known to reduce the risk of infection. Wash your hands with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser gel if water is not available.

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