NEW DELHI: The Union Health Ministry issued guidelines on the rational use of personal protective equipment (PPE) which is being used by healthcare workers and others working at quarantine centres, hospitals and laboratories.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a protective gear designed to safeguard the health of workers by minimising the exposure to a biological agent. Components of PPE are goggles, face-shield, mask, gloves, coverall/gowns (with or without aprons), head cover and shoe cover.
The guidelines issued by the ministry mention the functions of PPE and how it prevents one from contracting the infection in different settings.
“This guideline is for healthcare workers and others working in points of entries (POEs), quarantine centres, hospital, laboratory and primary healthcare / community settings. The guideline uses setting approach to guide on the type of personal protective equipment to be used in different settings,” the guidelines added.
Explaining the mode of transmission of the pathogen, the ministry said there is a clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of SARS-CoV-2.
“It is thought to be transmitted mainly through respiratory droplets that get generated when people cough, sneeze, or exhale. SARS-CoV-2 also gets transmitted by touching, by direct touch and through contaminated surfaces or objects and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. Healthcare associated infection by SARS-CoV-2 virus has been documented among healthcare workers in many countries,” it said.
“The people most at risk of COVID-19 infection are those who are in close contact with a suspect/confirmed COVID-19 patient or who care for such patients,” it added.