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Government doubles number of masks GPs can order from PPE portal

The number of face masks that GPs can order from the Government’s emergency PPE portal has doubled from 50 to 100 per week.

GPs were told last week that they can only access one pack of PPE a week from the new central PPE portal set up by the Government and launched at the end of May.

This pack was limited to 50 IIR masks, 200 aprons and 400 gloves (200 pairs), subject to change ‘over time’.

But Government guidance updated yesterday said: ‘GPs can order one combined pack, containing 100 IIR masks, 200 aprons and 400 gloves (200 pairs), per week or up to this amount of separate items.’

Pulse reported last week that the Government was rationing PPE available to GPs from the central inventory, which was finally launched in May after being touted since April. 

It comes as Pulse was able to clarify yesterday that PHE guidance on face coverings in general practice has not been updated, despite NHS England suggesting new mandatory face masks in hospitals would extend to primary care.

It also comes as the Government has clarified that any patients asking for GP notes to prove they are exempt from wearing a mask on public transport should not require one.