On Tuesday 28th April 2020, CSP Wales staff held a virtual meeting for members in Wales, on the impact of COVID-19 in physiotherapy.
This was an opportunity for members to pose questions to the panel in order to alleviate concerns or gain clarity on issues surrounding working within the profession during the current Coronavirus pandemic. Members were also able to share knowledge with each other using the platform’s chat function while the meeting was ongoing.
The meeting was hosted by Hayley Downey (Campaigns and Regional Engagement Officer), with Shan Aguilar-Stone (Professional Adviser), Adam Morgan (Senior Negotiating Officer) and Calum Higgins (Public Affairs and Policy Manager) answering members' questions. They were supported by Jenny Francis (Administration Officer) and Non Griffiths (Chair of the CSP Wales/Cymru Board), and Julie Owen and Louise Wright (Regional Stewards for Wales).
At the beginning of the meeting, participants were asked to provide feedback via Mentimeter on how they were feeling managing the impact of COVID-19, and the graphic below shows that the key phrases emerging were ‘uncertain’, ‘frustrated’ and ‘anxious.’
Following an hour of Q&A and discussion, participants were asked how the call had helped them managing COVID-19 in their workplace, and feelings of worry and anxiety were replaced by terms such as ‘helpful,’ ‘improved understanding’, ‘useful’ and ‘reassuring.’
The key issues that emerged from the meeting are summarised below.
CSP PPE Advice Summary
You will find all of the CSP’s information on PPE on these pages of our website: https://www.csp.org.uk/news/coronavirus/clinical-guidance/ppe-faqs.
Shan outlined the importance of determining that the type of PPE was determined by the treatment to be carried out i.e. aerosol generating procedures or not.
Public Health England’s latest update includes:
- Enhanced PPE recommendations for a wide range of health and social care contexts
- Inclusion of individual and organisational risk assessment at local level to inform PPE use
- Recommendation of single sessional (extended) use of some PPE items
- Re-usable PPE can be used. Advice on suitable decontamination arrangements should be obtained from the manufacturer, supplier or local infection control
- Guidance for when case status is unknown and SARS-CoV-2 is circulating at high levels
- Recommendation on patient use of facemasks
- Recommendation on the use of disposable fluid repellent coveralls as an alternative to long sleeved fluid repellent gowns for aerosol generating procedures or when working in higher risk acute areas. Staff need to be trained in the safe removal of coveralls
You can read these in more detail here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/wuhan-novel-coronavirus-infection-prevention-and-control/covid-19-personal-protective-equipment-ppe
CSP communications with Welsh Government
In response to a question on the Welsh Government's plans for COVID-19 rehab and getting back to 'normal', Calum Higgins gave an overview of the CSPs engagement with Welsh Government and stakeholders. Members were updated on:
- Regular meetings with Ruth Crowder, AHP adviser to Welsh Government
- Plans to push the need for rehab to be top of the agenda in the media
- Questions have been submitted to the Welsh Government Minister
- The process which Welsh Government will use to shape future plans, including WTAC, WPhlag, and professional bodies input.
- It was emphasised that this would be a developing piece of work and members are encouraged to feedback key issues or thoughts they would like raised with Welsh Government.
- A survey on innovative work being run by Aneurin Bevan Health Board was shared and members were encouraged to submit innovative practice to this survey. A link for the survey is here: https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/FK31MF/
Adam (SNO) also explained that:
- Trade Unions have weekly Trade Union meetings with Welsh Government and NHS Employers and a weekly meeting with the Vaughan Gething (The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care).
- Accessibility, viability of PPE and the associated guidance, testing, partnership working and terms and conditions have been raised and discussed on a regular basis.
- We have weekly technical briefings on PPE and testing and Welsh Government are now producing a weekly update on numbers of available PPE thanks to pressure from trade unions.
Guidance for private practitioners
The CSP has produced guidance to explore different ways of working within the private sector. However, it is a government level decision on when private practices should be re-opening.
The CSP are key influencers in the discussions about private practice insurance schemes.
Please see our relevant webpages which are constantly being updated: https://www.csp.org.uk/news/coronavirus/private-practiceindependent-sector
For further comments or queries you can contact the CSP here:https://www.csp.org.uk/contact_us
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