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Coronavirus Protection of Pharmacy Staff and Customers

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  • Coronavirus Protection of Pharmacy Staff and Customers

    Little advice has been available to pharmacists on protecting the pharmacy staff and wider public from the coronavirus. For example what is the official recommendation for anti viral treatment of phones, door handles, work tops, customer benches, tables and surfaces. Toilet taps, flush handles.and whether staff should be wearing gloves when handling paper prescriptions and money and 6 feet distancing from patients. These things need to be known urgently

  • #2
    I am approaching 86 and have most risk from this infection as I have lung problems. As an insurance policy I have purchased an oxygen generator. If the virus really takes hold, there will not be enough NHS ones available.
    About 10 - 12 years ago we received allocations of an antiviral as the Govnmt thought would be a dreadful epidemic. It seems to have been forgotten this time or was it proved ineffective. Forgotten name.
    johnep

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    • #3
      Advice we were given in Ireland, where all schools and colleges closed yesterday, is to use alcohol to wipe down surfaces. Frequent hand washing or using >60% alcohol hand sanitizer is recommended over the use of gloves which would have to be changed after every transaction. Dispensary staff aren’t taking payments.

      We are limiting access to the shop with no patients waiting for prescriptions. Massive demand for OTC medicines and dispensing running at pre Christmas levels.

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      • #4
        My plan for Monday after discussing with other pharmacists and in the light of some surgeries closing or removing their receptionists I will try and put in place as much of the following measures as possible:
        1) Remove all leaflets and anything else that can be handled by patients from public area;
        2) Wear gloves for handling money and prescriptions;
        3) Make up bleach solution in bucket according to WTO guidelines for cleaning;
        4) Clean keyboards every half hour using damp paper towel and soap with one person to a keyboard;
        5) Set alarm for staff to wash hands every half hour;
        6) Notice in window asking anyone with dry cough, fever or visited a Category 1 country eg Italy, China to phone surgery or NHS24 and go straight home and stay there till further instructions from NHS;
        7) All doors, handles, light switches, benches, tables to be regularly cleaned
        8) Ask staff to keep to 2 metre distancing from customers and each other where possible and try not to touch face or eyes
        8) Delivery driver to carry sanitizing gel and wipe door bell before ringing leaving medicine on doorstep and watch until patient picks it up;
        9) Anybody in the pharmacy with a cough or fever will have to go home and company will need to send new staff if available. One pharmacist has started checking all staff every morning with a Braun Heat Seeking Thermometer but I don't have one;
        10) I will ask doctors to let as many prescriptions as possible be collected by driver;
        11) No waiting in shop by patients for prescriptions.

        If anyone thinks of any further measures I can take please let me know. Or if you think some measures are not suitable.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by johnep View Post
          I am approaching 86 and have most risk from this infection as I have lung problems. As an insurance policy I have purchased an oxygen generator. If the virus really takes hold, there will not be enough NHS ones available.
          About 10 - 12 years ago we received allocations of an antiviral as the Govnmt thought would be a dreadful epidemic. It seems to have been forgotten this time or was it proved ineffective. Forgotten name.
          johnep
          Was this Oseltamivir aka Tamiflu? Iirc in the field it was seen to be no more effective (and I hope no worse) than Paracetamol.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Gordon Mackenzie View Post
            My plan for Monday after discussing with other pharmacists and in the light of some surgeries closing or removing their receptionists I will try and put in place as much of the following measures as possible:
            1) Remove all leaflets and anything else that can be handled by patients from public area;
            2) Wear gloves for handling money and prescriptions;
            3) Make up bleach solution in bucket according to WTO guidelines for cleaning;
            4) Clean keyboards every half hour using damp paper towel and soap with one person to a keyboard;
            5) Set alarm for staff to wash hands every half hour;
            6) Notice in window asking anyone with dry cough, fever or visited a Category 1 country eg Italy, China to phone surgery or NHS24 and go straight home and stay there till further instructions from NHS;
            7) All doors, handles, light switches, benches, tables to be regularly cleaned
            8) Ask staff to keep to 2 metre distancing from customers and each other where possible and try not to touch face or eyes
            8) Delivery driver to carry sanitizing gel and wipe door bell before ringing leaving medicine on doorstep and watch until patient picks it up;
            9) Anybody in the pharmacy with a cough or fever will have to go home and company will need to send new staff if available. One pharmacist has started checking all staff every morning with a Braun Heat Seeking Thermometer but I don't have one;
            10) I will ask doctors to let as many prescriptions as possible be collected by driver;
            11) No waiting in shop by patients for prescriptions.

            If anyone thinks of any further measures I can take please let me know. Or if you think some measures are not suitable.
            You haven't mentioned a suggestion that arose due to a "Chinese Whisper" that anal swabs should be taken from potential carriers (presumably nasal swabs was intended). This was followed up by a suggestion that the anus of suspected carriers should then be painted with Gentian Violet (possibly Methylene Blue). This is no joke, I didn't see it myself but I have it on good authority that it was on one of the mainstream TV Channels.

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            • #7
              As I understand it from both Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and PM Johnson people from different households shouldn't be mixing. To ensure this separation it would seem that pharmacies from tomorrow will only be able to allow one person in at a time unless from the same household. Comments please.

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              • #8
                Reading a news item about Elon Musk to start making ventilators, I noticed that the pt supposedly on a ventilator actually had just the Oxygen intranasal tubes.
                I think that Oxygen generators which can be used in the home would be more useful as ITU units overflow.
                Like the wise virgins in the parable, another forum member and I have bought these machines as an insurance. Let us hope they arrive in time. I am told mine is half way here on a boat.
                johnep

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by johnep View Post
                  Reading a news item about Elon Musk to start making ventilators, I noticed that the pt supposedly on a ventilator actually had just the Oxygen intranasal tubes.
                  I think that Oxygen generators which can be used in the home would be more useful as ITU units overflow.
                  Like the wise virgins in the parable, another forum member and I have bought these machines as an insurance. Let us hope they arrive in time. I am told mine is half way here on a boat.
                  johnep
                  Like many other adolescent boys I always had trouble when that question was posed; would you rather be inside wit the wise virgins, or outside with the foolish ones!

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                  • #10
                    As a patient I always wear a full face respirator when I visit the pharmacy or hospital now, I consider them to be high risk zones so gloves and respirator donned before entering and then dispose of the gloves immediately after leaving and sanitise and remove the respirator.

                    2m is unfortunately not enough distance, a cough can spread the virus 5m and a sneeze 8m.

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