The English and Welsh governments have now removed the requirement for face masks in healthcare settings unless there is a known COVID infection or exposure to bodily fluids. In Scotland, face mask use is likely to last until July and in Northern Ireland, face masks are still encouraged in most settings. Members should now follow the national Infection and Prevention Control (IPC) guidance for their country (links below).
Practitioners in England and Wales, in line with the Osteopathic Practice Standards, should continue to assess for the risk of infection (of any type) and apply mitigations which in their professional judgement are deemed appropriate to protect either the patient or practitioner. This may be as a practice policy or applied on a case-by-case basis determined by the patient’s circumstances.
For those osteopaths operating in NHS settings or settings where NHS services are delivered, the Infection Prevention and Control guidance is considered mandatory.
We will be updating the advice for practitioners on the COVID hub accordingly over the next 48 hours.