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Powys Teaching Health Board reintroduces masks in clinical areas for patients, visitors and staff

Increasing community COVID-19 infections prompts health board decision

As cases of COVID-19 infections continue to increase in the community, Powys Teaching Health Board has introduced a local infection prevention and control policy to reduce the spread of the virus.

Claire Roche, Executive Director of Nursing for the health board, said: “Patient and staff safety is our first priority, which is why we now strongly encourage all patients and visitors to wear face coverings, to continue to wash their hands frequently, and to respect social distancing when visiting our sites.

“All staff members working in clinical areas in patient-facing roles will also be wearing face masks and will continue other infection prevention and control measures. This will help keep our patients, visitors and staff members as protected as possible from the potential spread of COVID-19.”

The new policy will apply to in-patients, those that attend out-patient clinics or have a procedure performed, those that attend primary care settings such as visiting their GP, attending our Minor Injury Units, or those that attend our Birthing Centres.

As a final protective measure all members of the community nursing and health visiting teams that visit patients in their own homes or places of residence will wear face masks and follow other infection prevention and control measures.

“These measures are in addition to the health board’s plea to members of the public to be infection aware,” continues Claire Roche.

“We respectfully ask that no one enters any of our sites if they are feeling unwell, have symptoms associated with any respiratory infection such as COVID-19 and flu, or are experiencing cold-like symptoms, diarrhoea and vomiting, fever or have a rash. In such an instance call NHS 111 Wales or consult your GP for advice. If you are severely unwell dial 999 without delay.

“We will review our guidance when community infection levels reduce and it is appropriate to do so,” she concludes.