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Five-day wait for PPE from Government portal

Orders for PPE made through the Government’s PPE portal will now take five days to arrive, the Department of Health and Social Care has said.

In September the Government announced that GP practices would be able to secure all of their PPE through the winter period until March next year.

Initially it pledged that orders would be met within 48 hours from its pandemic stockpile being stored at 25 locations across the UK.

At the start of October – when setting out how much PPE practices would be able to order – it said practices would receive their PPE orders via Royal Mail ‘within four days’.

But the DHSC today updated the ordering information to say ‘orders will be delivered by Royal Mail within five days’.

Orders are limited based on practice size so practices with 30,000 or more patients have an allowance of up to 2,600 Type IIR face masks per week.

Those with list sizes of 11,000 to 29,999 can order up to 1,100, while those with 8,000 to 10,999 can order 500 and those with 5,000 to 7,999 are entitled to 400.

The smallest practices – with up to 5,000 patients – can had their allowance increased to 200 masks a week.

Order limits for some other PPE items had also increased, in particular those for aprons and gloves.

The Government said the portal had been made possible by a ‘huge’ increase in domestic manufacturing of PPE.

By December, it expects 70% of PPE required by the UK’s health and social care sector will be made in the UK, including all items except gloves.