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  • Leigh-Ann Little

Keeping the centre Covid secure


The continued restrictions and legitimate concerns around Covid-19 continues to influence the manner in which we can undertake operations within our centre. We are continually updating our policies and procedures in line with guidance across advisory, legislative and governing bodies. The risk posed by Covid-19 to our business and the community we support means that we have additional considerations and guidance to comply with. In essence every step we have and will continue to take is about upholding the safety of everyone involved with The Oxygen Works and to mitigate risks that could result in further cessation of services. Throughout our remobilisation of services, the support and compliance across our members has been incredible and that has been very much appreciated by all the team.


We appreciate that society is being bombarded with guidance and ‘rules’ from various sources and at times these can be difficult to understand the logic. We wanted to help by giving some of the rationale behind some of our compulsory policies while attending The Oxygen Works to help everyone to understand the important role each of us play in keeping our centre as safe as possible.


Face coverings

Face coverings are mandatory for everyone entering the centre for oxygen therapy. We appreciate that these can be uncomfortable, however we must insist that anyone accessing oxygen therapy wears a covering; all of our staff and volunteers will be required to do the same. We would hope that given you wear an oxygen mask for up to an hour when in the chamber, a face covering for the short period before entering and after exiting the chamber will be more than manageable for you. If you do not believe you can wear a face covering whilst attending The Oxygen Works, please contact me by emailing leigh-ann@theoxygenworks.com.


Oxygen masks

Based on guidance from our clinical and technical advisors for (hyperbaric) oxygen therapy and in line with Public Health Scotland risk assessment review guidance, we now require all attendees for oxygen therapy to wear their oxygen mask throughout the full session in the chamber. You will be invited into the chamber one at a time, you will then be required to put your oxygen mask on immediately; the next person cannot be admitted until you are breathing from the oxygen line. Oxygen masks must only be removed briefly if you require to take a sip of water to support equalising the pressure in your ears.

We do not underestimate that it is tiring to keep your mask on for the full session especially during compression and decompression however this is to limit the risks associated with being in and operating the chamber. The chamber is a sealed pressure vessel, therefore when not utilising the exhaust valve to vent exhalant through the pipework this poses additional risk should a Covid positive person be in the chamber. In addition, when we decompress that chamber some of the air is vented into the centre which can pose increased risk to our operator and staff. To support mitigating this risk oxygen masks must be worn until instructed to remove by a member of our team. Failure for us to uphold this procedure, could result in further cessation of services as staff would be considered at increased risk of having to self isolate.


Late cancellations/no shows

We are seeing an increasing number of late cancellations and no shows for appointments; please ensure you let us know with at least 24 hours notice if you cannot attend for your appointment. We are running a severely limited service due to restrictions and we have people desperate to get in for oxygen therapy. We appreciate we are only open 3 days a week, however we have a voicemail system which is checked regularly where you can let us know if you need to cancel or change an appointment. Late cancellations lead to other members being unable to access sessions and increases the financial burden on the charity. We do appreciate that things can change for people last minute and we will always be understanding of this, however we also need to try to ensure that access to services are safeguarded for everyone.


The current situation is affecting every single one of us, and the constant changes are a challenge. We are confident that our members will continue to support the policies and procedures necessary to keep everyone safe, however where individuals persistently ignore instruction we will have no option but to refuse further appointments.

Thank you for all your support and patience while we work to redesign and remobilise our services.

Yours Sincerely,


Leigh-Ann Little

CEO

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☏ 01463 240365

Burnett Rd, Inverness IV1 1TF, Scotland

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©2020 by The Oxygen Works Registered Charity SC020475 (MS Therapy Centre Inverness Ltd)