GP turns to homemade PPE to combat 'patchy' supply

Melbourne-based Dr Mukesh Haikerwal says his practice has been forced to make their own protective face shields, gowns and caps

Ongoing PPE shortages have forced a high profile Melbourne GP to turn to homemade gowns, face shields and scrub caps to continue testing patients for coronavirus.

Dr Mukesh Haikerwal, a former AMA President, has consistently called out the supply issue that has plagued GPs in the state and across the country since the start of the pandemic.

The respiratory clinic set up at Dr Haikerwal’s practice in Altona North, in the city’s southwest, is currently testing around 120 patients a day for COVID-19.

Although the practice managed to procure some face masks and gowns, supply from the National Medical Stockpile and the state government had been "patchy" and wasn't enough to cover the practice's testing needs.

Dr Haikerwal, who sits on the AMA Victoria Council, says GPs' concerns had been communicated to the state's Chief Health Officer Dr Brett Sutton.

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