Wearing PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) – Our Future?
This isn’t a scientific study or based-on evidence from the National Health Service, but my own observations and experience recently.
I have been out 3 times in the last week or so, for exercise and one trip to take some groceries to a friend. Since the Coronavirus hit the Uk , I have had masks to wear. Having travelled extensively in the Far East, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea where it has been usual for them to be in an environment where the wearing of masks is the normal everyday thing. Everyone wears masks as naturally as wearing clothing.
We know and understand that PPE, (Personal Protective Equipment) is worn by Nurses, Doctors, Ancillary hospital staff, Care Workers, Care Home Workers. I recently, (before the lockdown) visited my dentist, he and the nurse wore PPE, masks and visors
But what about everyone else? The other front line staff? am thinking Bus Drivers, the buses are still running and I am sure we have all seen that they “don’t appear” to have been supplied with PPE? The Taxi Drivers? Mini Bus Drivers, our ever faithful Postmen and Postwomen, and also the army of Lorry Drivers , all of these people doing a tremendous job, but are they risking themselves by not having and wearing PPE?
These are desperate times and I am saddened by the statistics (Government) today that the UK total now stands at 13,700 citizens who have lost their lives. 13,700 sons, mothers, daughters, fathers, and grandparents that have been laid to rest without a family burial, dying alone without any family present, parents losing children, children losing parents, and grandparents. It is a very very sad time that we are living in.
Of course that figure of 13,700 is not the real figure, it is only the figure from the Government that have been hospitalised and had treatment for Coronavirus Covid19 The many many people who have sadly died in their homes, or in care homes or even in hospital but haven’t been treated, these figures are NOT included in the Government figures. The UK has not reached a “Peak” yet, and no one knows when that will be, as it is very reliant on you, me , us, complying with the Governments “Directive” for us to stay at home. The Slogan is “Stay at Home Save Lives” and clearly, the majority of us are, and given that it is a massive restriction on Liberty, those complying should be congratulated, a pat on the back, Well Done!
Sadly there is the minority, who feel they don’t have to and really don’t care. Is it “ignorance?” is it “I Don’t Care?” or is it “No one is telling me what to do” and whilst these people carry on, I wonder to myself ……“would they have this cavalier attitude if their son or daughter then caught the virus and was in Intensive care fighting for their lives, being treated by the very nurses and doctors who are risking their own lives?”. What if, as a result, they themselves caught the virus, and it was their children who could not see them fighting for their lives in hospital? and what if they INFECTED their grandparents with the virus? It is a worrying thought.
These people, a minority, really are risking everyones lives , AND extending the “Lockdown” period, which today was extended a further 3 weeks, at which time it will be reviewed again.
I have not seen my family for weeks, I live alone and my daughter Kirsty, husband Robert and 3 grandchildren live 20 miles away. Would I love to see them? Yes of course? Have I seen them? No of course NOT. We facetime every day (thank goodness for the internet) It is my granddaughter Mia’s Birthday tomorrow, she will be 15 years old and it will be the first time I have missed her birthday. I will miss Robert’s next month and if this extends to July I will my grandson Mason’s and Daughter Kirsty’ birthday too. I hope I will be able to see them sooner than that, but it is so very reliant on us staying home for the foreseeable future, and think of others.
So, will we all be required to wear PPE when this lockdown starts to be lifted? because the virus is not going to suddenly disappear, it will still be here amongst us, and we will be fighting it until (we hope) the scientists find a vaccine that works, and that could easily be 18 months away.
On the continent, they have embraced the wearing of masks as they do in the Far East, they see the validity and advantage of using PPE. Of course the only way to guarantee PPE to not catch this virus is to be in a positive air suit, top to bottom. The wearing of masks and visors reduces the possibility of catching it, and in conjunction with washing your hands multiple times per day… These are precautionary measure that reduce the chances
I wonder if we in the UK, are embarrassed to wear as part of our normal daily routine, or don’t understand the validity of wearing?
These pictures are my friend who is a volunteer delivery driver who delivers food and prescriptions. He has a wife and vulnerable parents, and wears full PPE, and a friend who works in Care in the Community, with her PPE
Important people doing what they can to help our country
I come back to my original idea to write this blog, my walks over the last week or so I have been gauging the reaction where I have been wearing my PPE Mask.
I wear my mask every time I go out, just a daily walk, around the city, and a food run to a friend every week. I am a polite person, always acknowledge anyone I see, always have done wether it be here in Wells, in the UK or abroad around the world, and generally the response is mutual. So, given that seeing someone wandering around (not in a hospital) wearing a surgical mask has had some interesting reactions. Keeping the social distancing I have had my walks and have been my usual cheery self, saying “Hi” or “Good morning” or Good afternoon” and the reaction has ranged from the same greeting back, complete silence, to looking the other way, to rude stares, one couple with 2 children actually turned around and went back the way they had come. One couple stopped and asked me where I had bought my masks as they would like to get some. I will return tomorrow with some in my pocket for them … That was a great reaction.
So, whilst walking back to my home I wondered why I had such difference reactions, and would those reactions stop people from wearing themselves in the future?
Was it possible that people thought because I was wearing a mask, did I have the virus? Was I perceived as being stupid? The driver of the van near the Sherston Hotel, as I was waiting to cross the road, certainly decided that I needed his rude gesture….
I honestly don’t know why there were different reactions, but I do think one reason is that it has never been a “normal sight” to see in the UK. The Government have been telling us that we need to take our own personal hygiene seriously. The Coronavirus Covid19 is going to be here for the long haul and I will continue to wear a mask and gloves, and wash hands multiple times a day, to protect my friends family and loved ones. Will you?
Praise the Lord all you nations; extol him, all you peoples.
For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness
of the Lord endures forever.
Praise the Lord
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