Home Menu Search

Advice for GP Surgeries Regarding Patients and Facemasks

Publication date: August 2020

The Government website advises that all patients over the age of 11 years old wear face coverings in NHS settings, including community care settings, such as GP surgeries and hospitals. Face coverings can consist of a range of options, including cloth masks, scarves, face shields, or surgical masks and must cover the nose and mouth. 

GP surgeries must protect all patients who attend the practice. As an employer, the practice has a duty of care to staff. Humberside LMC encourages practices to require patients to wear face coverings whenever they enter the practice premises. If a patient refuses to do so, despite being offered one and having the reasons explained to them, the LMC will support practices who offer non-face to face care until the patient complies. 

There are very few valid medical reasons for not wearing a face covering; patients in whom there is a genuine exemption can be identified by the practice and managed accordingly. Please contact the LMC if you have any questions or concerns regarding this issue.

Update 18/08/2020

The BMA has issued the following statement regarding face coverings:

"The BMA believes that the government must do more to protect healthcare workers in community settings, including GP surgeries, and require those entering a healthcare facility to wear a face covering, as is the case for shops and other indoor settings. 

It is for practices to decide how to deliver services to their patients. It is also a practice’s responsibility for them to protect their staff and patients, many of whom may be vulnerable to the most severe effects of Covid-19, from unnecessary risk. Therefore, if a patient refuses to wear a face covering inside a practice, without good reason, the practice can choose to provide services to that patient by means other than face-to-face consultation within the practice.

Practices should inform patients, in advance of their attendance, that a face covering will be required to protect other patients, clinicians and other staff who they will inevitably come into proximity with inside the building. If a patient has a legitimate reason for not wearing a face covering the practice will need to consider this on an individual basis."

 

Related guidance and newsletters...

Coronavirus

Message for patients: the information on this page is aimed at health professionals. Information and advice about coronavirus for...

Antibody Testing

In response to NHSE's recent undertaking for staff and patients to have access to antibody testing, local CCGs will be inviting...

LMC Statement - BAME Staff and Coronavirus

Relative Risks from COVID - 19 for people from Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority Backgrounds (BAME) We have all become aware over the...

LMC Manifesto for General Practice

Humberside LMCs today publishes its manifesto for general practice. Workforce and wellbeing • We need to retain the excellent...

Your Wellbeing

As we find ourselves facing incredibly difficult times, please remember that the LMC is here to support you. Please visit our resilience...

Definition of Essential Services

“Essential services” means the services required to be provided in accordance with Regulation 15: Essential services 15.—(1) For the...

Flu Programme 2020/21

This page is where you can find information on the national flu immunisation programme 2020/21. Flu Programme FAQs - September...

Our Message to Practices in the Humber Area

Humberside LMCs would like to thank all practices for their continued hard work in meeting unprecedented demand in primary care, and in...

Disposal of Paper Documents

Technically, if records are kept in an electronic format, that cannot be altered i.e. scanned document, then they can be deemed to...

News

LMC Survey 2019 19/11/2019 GPs and practice managers in the Humber region are invited to take part in our annual survey to shape the...