Manx Care has announced that medical grade IIR fluid-resistant facemasks must be worn in all of the health and social care settings it operates across the Island, in line with new Covid-19 guidance announced by the Chief Minister last night. This includes including Noble’s Hospital, Ramsey District Cottage Hospital, Primary Care Settings including GP surgeries, and all Care Homes and Day Services.
Fresh masks are provided free at every entrance, and are the best protection for patients, visitors, and those around them when worn correctly. They should be worn to fully cover both the nose and mouth.
This isn’t a change in Manx Care’s policy; it’s been a requirement that all members of the public visiting its health and social care settings have had to wear a medical grade IIR fluid-resistant facemask for a number of months now, unless exempt from doing so. However, in line with the Island’s move to Level Two of its Covid-19 escalation plan, this serves as a timely reminder for all members of the public to wear the correct type of facemask in the correct position on the face, fully covering both the nose and mouth.
However, Manx Care is asking all members of the public to voluntarily take a Lateral Flow Test (LFD) around 45 minutes to one hour before visiting one of its health and social care settings in order to detect individuals who may be infected with the Covid-19 virus, but who may be asymptomatic. This is a change in policy, and comes into immediate effect today. The LFDs in use on the Island are able to detect the new Omicron variant.
Manx Care’s Chief Executive, Teresa Cope, commented: “In recent weeks we’ve seen people attending our health and social care settings who’ve been unhappy about us asking them to swap their own personal cloth facemasks for a medical grade IIR fluid-resistant facemask provided by us, and we’ve also seen a number of people wearing them incorrectly.
“It is really important to wear the right mask in the right way. The medical grade IIR fluid-resistant facemasks should be worn in all Manx Care health and social care settings, as they offer the best protection for patients, visitors, and those people around them. We hope the development of a simple poster which shows how to correctly wear a mask, and safely dispose of it afterwards, will be an effective reminder for members of the public visiting our facilities. Please feel free to share this – it’s a great visual aid for people.
“We actively encourage people to take regular LFDs themselves to detect whether they may be an asymptomatic carrier of Covid-19, and so are asking people to do this before visiting a health or social care setting is another way of helping to protect our patients, service users and members of staff.”