A couple of million masks issued to NHS staff could not meet security requirements, it has been revealed.
The Division of Well being and Social Care (DHSC) has requested hospital workers to cease utilizing a particular model of FFP3 masks – a respirator masks utilized by healthcare professionals to protect in opposition to coronavirus – as it could not meet its important technical specification.
The division mentioned round 1.2 million of those high-grade masks had been distributed, which makes up round 4% of inventory held in frontline shops and about 1.7% of masks which might be used day-to-day.
Jonathan Ashworth, Labour’s shadow well being secretary, mentioned the incident was “one more instance of ministers shopping for duff PPE that’s insufficient for shielding our hardworking NHS workers”.
In an alert revealed on the Central Alerting System (Cas) on Thursday, the DHSC requested hospital workers to cease utilizing the masks branded Fang Tian and equipped by Polyco Healthline, a hygiene product producer.
It additionally urged healthcare suppliers to instantly quarantine any inventory of the product.
“Following info acquired from the NHS, we’re additionally searching for to substantiate the origin of manufacture,” it mentioned.
FFP3 masks have been really helpful as private protecting gear (PPE) for medical doctors and nurses who’re treating individuals with COVID-19.
Mr Ashworth added: “Ministers ought to apologise and guarantee each penny for each piece of unusable PPE is recovered.”
A DHSC spokesperson mentioned: “The protection of frontline workers and sufferers is our absolute precedence and as a precaution we now have issued recommendation to well being and care suppliers to test to see if their inventory contains this product, and to cease utilizing these masks pending additional investigation.
“We have now a resilient provide of FFP3 masks to make sure that well being and social care staff have entry to the PPE they want.”
It comes because the British Medical Affiliation referred to as on the federal government to offer enhanced PPE for frontline staff following the surge of extra infectious variants of COVID-19.
Polyco Healthline has been approached for remark.