PPE for COVID-19: What You Need to Know

Posted in: About Valley Northern 27th February 2020 PPE for COVID-19: What You Need to Know

Valley Northern continues to monitor the Coronavirus outbreak in the United Kingdom and around the world.


The worldwide spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has caused panic on a global scale throughout this year. More than 82,000 people are known to be infected, with a total 19 confirmed cases in the UK so far. More than 2,800 deaths from the illness, which presents with flu-like symptoms but can lead to complications such as severe pneumonia, have been recorded since the first cases were reported in Wuhan, China on 31st December 2019.

The majority of cases and fatalities have been contained within China, but the virus is spreading internationally. In recent days Italy has become Europe's worst-affected country, with more than 300 cases and 11 deaths. A ‘lockdown’ area has been established North of Rimini, Pisa and Florence in an attempt to contain the outbreak.  

Of over 82,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus, a promising 30,240 people have been reported to have recovered – including a newborn baby girl at the epicentre of the disease in Wuhan; who made a full recovery at 17 days-old without being administered medication.

The UK Chief Medical Officers have raised the risk to the public from low to moderate, but have been keen to state that the risk to individuals remains low. Indeed, Health Ministers in Italy’s neighbouring European countries have decided closing borders would be "disproportionate".

The 13 confirmed cases within the UK have been international travellers staying within the UK or Britons having travelled back to the UK from infected areas. In all cases, Public Health England (PHE)'s containment strategy was quickly put into action to piece together the movements of those testing positive for the disease and to isolate anyone who may have contracted the virus from these carriers.

Despite PHE’s efforts, containment failure and transmission within the UK are still causes for concern. Reassuringly, Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty is adamant it is a question of “if, not when”, as it is only when there are five-to-seven links in the chain of transmission that health officials would concede containment is no longer realistic. In this instance, all efforts would be focused on NHS contingency planning to cope with the surge in patients that would follow.

Healthcare personnel can protect themselves and prevent possible spread when caring for suspected coronavirus patients by adhering to infection prevention and control practices, as outlined by PHE, including the appropriate use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). It is advisable to ensure good stock levels of PPE in preparation for a COVID-19 outbreak.

Valley Northern have been constantly reviewing our supply chain throughout the coronavirus outbreak. Due to unprecedented demand for face masks, we have run out of stock of these for the moment – in fact, stocks sold out as soon as we took delivery on one occasion. Face masks are not one of our core products and are heavily reliant on Chinese sources, which we source very little from as a rule and where exports have seen dramatic decreases as a result of the outbreak. We hope to have more available as soon as possible.

Valley Northern have a secure base of suppliers and do not anticipate stock problems with other items relevant to the coronavirus outbreak.  
Items in stock are:

·Hand gels and soaps; including dispensers and refill cartridges
·Mob caps
We also have good stocks of antibacterial and disinfectant wipes, as well as couch roll and tissue products.

As the weather gets warmer and the first clinical trial to evaluate a treatment for COVID-19 has begun on a study participant in the US, who caught the disease while onboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship, we hope to see an improvement in the coronavirus situation’s outlook very soon.

In the meantime, our Customer Services team welcomes all enquiries about our stock levels of relevant PPE and hygiene items.

Call 01785 250 123 or email sales@valleynorthern.com.


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