Table 6

Definition of situational personal protective equipment level requirements (also refer to figure 2)

SituationGlovesApronFluid-resistant long-armed gown/coverallsFabric / cloth mask*Fluid-resistant surgical face mask type IIR†Filtering face piece respirator 3 (FFP3) mask‡Goggles/full face visor in addition to personal spectacles
Single use§Single use§Sessional use¶Sessional use¶Sessional use¶Sessional use reusable**Sessional use
Non-medical scenario where social distancing may be breached47 including at training× × × × × ×
Level 1
Where government-advised distancing may not be maintained at all times
× × × × × ×
Level 2
Within 2 m, which may include face-to-face contact for emergency/first aid management of all individuals
× × ×
Level 3/AGP
Aerosol-generating procedure (AGP or high potential for aerosol)
× × ×
  • *Three layers: first water absorbent cotton, second filter layer and third is water resistant.47 A face covering or cloth mask is not the same as a type IIR surgical face mask; it is consequently not sufficient to form part of a club’s EAP.

  • †When using a type IIR fluid-repellent surgical face mask, you should mould the metal strap of the mask over the bridge of the nose and make sure the mask fits snugly under the chin, around or across any facial hair if present. Can be worn without removal for up to a 4-hour session; must be changed if visibly soiled, damp or damaged.

  • ‡The WHO does recommend FFP2 mask as an alternative to FFP3.47 FFP3 is adopted by this framework in line with PHE. Each individual requiring use of an FFP mask must ensure they have a mask that is compatible to their face shape. Each mask requires a ‘fit-testing’ process to be conducted to ensure no aerosol leakage occurs through the seal. Facial hair does impact the efficacy of the masks, and alternative arrangements may need to be considered in these circumstances.49

  • §Single use: equipment that must be changed after each contact.29

  • ¶Sessional use: worn for a period of time when undertaking duties in a specific clinical care setting/exposure environment; a session ends when the responder leaves this defined remit; however, masks should be disposed of if they become moist, damaged or visibly soiled.29

  • **Reusable equipment appropriately decontaminated to PHE standards that can be reused.52

  • EAP, emergency action plan; PHE, Public Health England.