Advice for professions as Covid-19 restrictions end

ABDO has produced posters for practices to use

ABDO and the College of Optometrists are advising that practices should continue to operate in the Amber phase and maintain high infection control standards this summer.

Today (Monday 19 July) marks the lifting of further lockdown restrictions across many parts of the UK.

ABDO and the College of Optometrists advise the profession in all nations that they should continue to follow the College’s Amber guidance, their national eyecare standard operating procedures and the General Optical Council supporting statements for the Amber phase.

The organisations are continuing to work with public health officials and will keep the profession updated on any changes.

Practices should continue to:
• Maintain social distancing where possible
• Ensure all staff wear a face mask (FRFM) and follow the correct use of personal protective equipment (PPE)
• Recommend the public continue to wear a face covering when on practice premises
• Ensure scrupulous hand-washing
• Ensure good surface disinfection and frame sanitising after every patient episode
• Encourage all staff to use lateral flow tests and report the results regularly
• Maintain patient triage and prioritisation
• Maintain good ventilation throughout the practice

ABDO and the College said in a joint statement: “Maintaining high standards of infection controls, including hand-washing and wearing face masks is vital to protect practice teams and remain open to provide eyecare as people begin to move about more freely,

“We anticipate the Amber phase guidance will continue for some period and beyond 2021 as we do not know what the winter will bring.

“We will continue to monitor the situation, as the transition from the Amber to Green phase guidance will be guided by each respective nation’s government decisions and subject to a variety of factors, including a sustained reduction in Covid-19 transmission risk and the removal of social distancing and infection prevention and control requirements.”

To support the management of mask wearing amongst patients, ABDO has provided posters that can be found here.

They can be downloaded and printed from PDFs in colour or black and white. There are also JPGs for use on practice websites and social media accounts.