Masks still necessary for patients in Bishop’s Stortford, Sawbridgeworth and Stansted
Patients are still required to wear face coverings in GP practices and other healthcare settings in Bishop’s Stortford, Sawbridgeworth and Stansted as Covid-19 restrictions eased on Monday (July 19).
The guidance from the NHS for healthcare settings has not changed. Patients not exempt from wearing a face covering should continue to wear one and follow social distancing and hand hygiene guidance. If they are exempt, a face shield may be offered as an alternative.
Dr Jane Halpin, joint chief executive officer of the Hertfordshire and West Essex Integrated Care System and Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: “We need to continue to do what we can to keep people safe from catching Covid-19 in healthcare settings. One way we can all help with this is by continuing to wear a face covering, and we are asking all patients to do that, as well as staff. Keeping staff safe is essential to keep operating efficiently.
“We're also continuing to make sure we don’t have large numbers of patients in waiting areas – again, this is about reducing the chance of infection when there are rising rates in the community.
“The various measures we've taken, including increased use of personal protective equipment (PPE), patients wearing face masks, holding more virtual consultations, social distancing and extra premises cleans, have helped protect staff, patients and visitors over the past year. Taking these steps has also enabled us to continue providing many of the non-urgent services that would otherwise have been postponed.
“We want to make sure you can all be confident about accessing or visiting local healthcare services safely.”