Date published: 
3 September 2020
Type: 
Webinar
Audience: 
Health sector
Webinar date : 
Thursday, September 10 2020 11:30 am to 12:00 pm AEST
COVID-19 response update for general practitioners – 10 September

Presenters

  • Professor Michael Kidd
  • Dr Catherine Kelaher
  • Dr Lucas De Toca

Questions and answers

Question: We see a lot of paediatrics with respiratory symptoms. Therefore, to protect our GPs I want them to wear a face shield over a surgical mask. Is a face shield meant to be single use? Or can we clean?

Answer: You can find useful information in the Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare (2019) on how personal protective equipment should be used during this pandemic.

The Infection Control Expert Group (ICEG) provides expert advice and information to the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) to support best practice related to Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) in community, hospital and other clinical settings.

If marked single-use, the face shields should not be used again.

For more information please see ICEG’s published advice, including on cleaning and disinfection of protective eyewear.

Question: Can you clarify the situation with face shields please? I can’t get answers about what face shields are reusable and cleanable vs single use only. They are not labelled clearly and our supplier couldn't help.

Answer: The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) safeguards and enhances the health of the Australian community through effective and timely regulation of therapeutic goods. See a list of commercial suppliers who have registered their products with the TGA.

Also, you may find useful ICEG’s published advice, including on cleaning and disinfection of protective eyewear.

Question: Is it permissible for a GP to bill a COVID-19 telehealth attendance where the GP is required, due to the patient’s incapacity, to communicate with the patient’s professional or personal carers on the patient’s behalf, as long as the patient is present during the attendance?

Answer: Thank you for asking this question. Yes, it is permissible for a GP to bill a COVID-19 telehealth attendance in this situation. The temporary COVID-19 telehealth items are intended to substitute for standard face-to-face attendance items and cannot be billed for services which would not normally be billed to the MBS.

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