What is it about?

This comment article is about the underlying evidence which advocates using single-use plastic aprons as part of basic personal protective equipment (PPE) when managing patients with suspected COVID-19. It aims to reach a clear conclusion regarding their efficacy, by looking into how the virus is transmitted, and then at which methods may be best to reduce this risk. This is followed by critiquing whether plastic aprons adequately perform this task.

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Why is it important?

The aim of PPE throughout the pandemic has been for reducing transmission of the virus between clinicians and patients, thus preventing infection, potentially serious illness and mortality. If current guidance is based upon evidence which could be improved with further research, then even more lives could potentially be saved by using more appropriate, evidence-based PPE.


I feel that there has been a certain level of animosity towards PPE throughout the pandemic, and that this article could have two potential outcomes if successful. One would be identifying any areas for future improvement in evidencing the benefits of specific PPE for COVID-19, which in turn could improve patient safety. The second could be an increased uptake of and respect for the guidelines among frontline staff, whose greater understanding and appreciation for the underpinning evidence may lead to increased PPE compliance.

Wesley Howarth
North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: PPE for SARS-Cov-2 and the utility of single-use aprons, Journal of Paramedic Practice, October 2021, Mark Allen Group,
DOI: 10.12968/jpar.2021.13.10.431.
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