Experiences of wearing Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) from a medical practitioner's professional perspective

Author: Dr Natalya Fox (medical practitioner), Registrar - Acute Medicine

1. Context

I currently work as a medical registrar in a district general hospital in southwest London, covering both acute medical admissions and general medical wards.  The patient population is varied including young adults to the elderly, coth COVID and non-COVID patients. The protection measures I need to take vary depending on the type of review or procedure I am undertaking.  For example. for patient reviews on a general ward (weather COVID positive or not) I have to wear scrubs, protective glasses, a surgical mask, gloves, and disposable apron. In contrast, when entering a patient area where there are aerosol-generating procedures (AGPs) such as ventilators or non-invasive ventilation (BI-PAP or CRAP) is underway, I must wear full protective gear including a long-sleeved apron, FFP3 mask, and full-face visor. Regular hand washing of course is also a regular  measure including entry and exit to any patient area or patient contact.