16,000 new reusable visors are now ready for use by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde staff as part of essential PPE required for protection against COVID-19.
The face shield visors are the result of a collaboration between a consortium of energy companies and the NHS to quickly develop and deploy a reusable face shield to help provide frontline staff with essential personal protective equipment.
NHSGGC’s Medical Devices Unit produced thousands of the new visors with the support and funding of Total, Shell, Baker Hughes and the Oil and Gas Technology Centre.
The new face shield visors are designed to be easily disassembled, decontaminated and safely reused. They can be used daily for over a month with appropriate infection control procedures, as opposed to single-use disposable visors.
The visor headband was produced using an injection mould funded by the consortium which allowed the visors to be produced in large numbers to a high quality and in a short time-frame.
The Medical Device Unit worked closely with the clinical governance team to ensure the re-usable visor meets PPE standards and is compatible with GG&C infection control methods.
NHSGGC’s team of engineers worked with the energy companies to improve the open-source Prusa design for a face visor. Design improvements include:
Modifications to improve side splash protection;
Improving the mechanism to attach the visor shield to the headband in order to ease disassembly for decontamination purposes;
Testing and approving more cost-effective materials, which maintain safety standards but improve comfort for the wearer.
The design of the reusable face shield visors was undertaken by the consortium of energy companies and NHS GG&C Medical Devices Unit and is available for other organisations to use to manufacture essential PPE.
Robin Sayer, Technical Operations Manager and Head of Mechanical Engineering, Medical Devices Unit, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said:
“Our team of clinical engineers, alongside clinical colleagues, worked to improve the design of a reusable visor for frontline staff. Not only have we made it easier for these visors to be decontaminated, they are also more comfortable to wear and have improved splash protection.
“We have produced 16,000 already and have the capability to make more as and when our staff need them. Although this doesn’t eliminate the need for disposable visors, these reusable visors have an important part to play in ensuring the availability of PPE for staff. Our thanks to the energy companies who have supported us.”
Margaret Connolly, Assistant Chief Nurse, Governance & Regulation, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said:
“We’ve been looking for a more sustainable solution to single-use visors for staff to use that’s safe and reduces plastic waste. The design of the reusable visor used by single members of staff allows easy cleaning of the visors per NHSGGC infection control guidance. Staff can write their names on the front of the visors which is a helpful communicate aid to both Staff and patients alike.”