Hairdressers could be ‘unknowingly passing on virus’ due to ‘inadequate ppe’

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Hairdressers could be unknowingly passing coronavirus to customers because of « inadequate » PPE, scientists have warned.

Government ministers have been told that plastic visors worn by hairdressers may allow airborne droplets to escape.

Scotland has strict PPE rules in place for close contact retail businesses including hairdressing, with the Scottish Government already insisting that face coverings are mandatory for both clients and staff, while the use of a visor is recommended.

In England, hairdressers must wear a visor, but it is up to the salon whether staff and clients wear a face covering.

UK Government ministers are now facing calls to revise guidance to barbers and hairdressers and require them wear both face masks and visors reports the Telegraph.

England’s guidelines which allow visors without face masks have been particularly criticised. Scotland’s insistence on face masks is preferred although scientists say both give the most protection.

Scientists are understood to have raised the concerns in the latest meeting of The New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag) on Friday.

The issue was also discussed in a recent meeting of at least one sub-committee of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE).

Prof Mark Wilcox, a professor of medical microbiology who attends Sage and two of its sub committees, said: « I don’t think the guidance is correct and I don’t understand why visors were chosen in preference to masks.

« We have, in several settings, discussed the issue of masks versus visors and I think it would be fair to say that I am not alone in these views. My colleagues both in those settings and in other settings share my views.

Dr Ben Killingley, a consultant in infectious diseases who sits on Nervtag, said: « I don’t know where it came from, where someone decided that just wearing a visor for hairdressers alone would be enough. That doesn’t make sense to me.

« A visor is primarily worn to protect workers from splashes. It does the same job as goggles, protecting the eyes. No healthcare worker would ever wear a visor without a mask.

« You would have thought for their own protection and just in case they have been infected themselves, they should be wearing a mask themselves. In my view, both to protect the hairdresser and the person coming in, just wearing a visor alone is not enough. »

Professor Peter Openshaw, a member of Nervtag, tweeted his concerns, after a haircut by a barber wearing a face shield, which he says offered him « zero protection ».

Hairdressers returned to work in Scotland on July 15 after the easing of more lockdown restrictions.

Over the coming weeks, shielding will be paused, pupils will return to school full time and dentists will be allowed to provide more services.

Source: https://news.google.com/__i/rss/rd/articles/CBMiZmh0dHBzOi8vd3d3LmRhaWx5cmVjb3JkLmNvLnVrL25ld3Mvc2NvdHRpc2gtbmV3cy9oYWlyZHJlc3NlcnMtY291bGQtdW5rbm93aW5nbHktcGFzc2luZy12aXJ1cy0yMjQ1NjU3MNIBamh0dHBzOi8vd3d3LmRhaWx5cmVjb3JkLmNvLnVrL25ld3Mvc2NvdHRpc2gtbmV3cy9oYWlyZHJlc3NlcnMtY291bGQtdW5rbm93aW5nbHktcGFzc2luZy12aXJ1cy0yMjQ1NjU3MC5hbXA?oc=5

World news – Hairdressers could be ‘unknowingly passing on virus’ due to ‘inadequate ppe’

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