Face shields to help NHS HeroesPosted on: April 14th 2020
Many hospitals are reporting that they are just hours away from running out of essential personal protective equipment (PPE) needed to keep nurses and doctors safe from coronavirus infection, as a leaked email from NHS bosses reveals the health service has already run out of some kit. Doctors and nurses have spoken out about shortages to PPE, including visors, masks and gowns, as demand across the country has jumped 2,000 per cent. Design Technology (DT) teachers up and down the country have responded with many schools now manufacturing protective face shields for the NHS, as part of the national effort to increase the availability of PPE for frontline NHS staff.
Over the Easter break, teachers at Amery Hill School have designed and started producing a face shield using the school’s laser cutter, with the first 80 face shields produced being delivered to local GP surgeries and Aldershot’s Centre for Health. The design involves laser cutting a polypropylene headband and attaching it to a clear PVC screen. Miss Kate Scott, one of the school’s DT teachers, who has been the driving force behind the project commented, “we have the capacity to make up to 200 face shields a day, with colleagues assisting in the DT workshop to laser cut the headband, shape and cut the visor and assemble and clean the face shield. I have been delighted at how quickly we have been able to respond to help our local NHS heroes. Our next challenge, however, will be to source additional materials to enable us to continue production.”
A further 200 face shields have been delivered this week to Frimley Park Hospital’s Stroke Department, Dementia Care, the NHS Covid-19 Response Team and Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice in Farnham. Talking about the recent delivery, Mr Simon Cox, Estates Manager at Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice said “the visors and gloves arrived and have gone straight into service on the ward. First reports from the nurses are that the visors are more comfortable than the ones we need to reuse at the moment. It sounds like they are already making a difference and have been a bit of a morale booster. Please pass on our thanks to all the team at Amery Hill School that have made this very special gesture possible.”
Personal protective equipment items have also been kindly donated by the school’s Science Department, with 2,500 gloves, 90 pairs of safety goggles and coveralls being collected by Frimley Park Hospital.