Heat stress and PPE during COVID-19: impact on healthcare workers' performance, safety and well-being in NHS settings

S. L. Davey, B. J. Lee, T. Robbins, H. Randeva, C. D. Thake

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Personal protective equipment (PPE) can potentiate heat stress, which may have a negative impact on the wearer's performance, safety and well-being. In view of this, a survey was distributed to healthcare workers (HCWs) required to wear PPE during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic in the UK to evaluate perceived levels of heat stress and its consequences. Respondents reported experiencing several heat-related illness symptoms, and heat stress impaired both cognitive and physical performance. The majority of respondents stated that wearing PPE made their job more difficult. These, and additional, responses suggest that modification to current working practices is required urgently to improve the resilience of HCWs to wearing PPE during pandemics.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)185-188
    Number of pages4
    JournalJournal of Hospital Infection
    Volume108
    Early online date7 Dec 2020
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2021

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2020 The Healthcare Infection Society

    Copyright:
    Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

    Keywords

    • COVID-19
    • Extreme environments
    • Healthcare workers
    • Heat stress
    • Heat-related illness
    • Personal protective equipment
    • SARS-CoV-2

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Microbiology (medical)
    • Infectious Diseases

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