The Health Ministry issued on Friday revised instructions for the use of gloves as per the guidelines of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) as follows:
In the community, the recommended measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 as per the ECDC are physical distancing, adherence to a respiratory etiquette and meticulous hand hygiene; and use of face masks in settings where physical distancing cannot be guaranteed. There is currently insufficient evidence to recommend that individuals in the community should wear medical gloves or gloves for household activities in the context of COVID-19.
Exceptions to the above where the use of gloves in the community is highly recommended are:
- those with a COVID-19 case within the same household, who provide them with direct care, or cleaning or directly handing potentially contaminated waste, such as used paper tissues.
- people in occupations who have already worn gloves prior to Covid-19 to protect themselves from infection, such as environmental cleaners and the police. The use of gloves may be considered as the best option when the use of other equipment (e.g. tongs) or single-use paper does not provide adequate protection during handling of ready-to-eat products.
The Health Ministry further noted that there is insufficient evidence to recommend the wearing of gloves to those occupations that did not already wear gloves for occupational reasons, e.g. cashiers in shops and supermarkets, bus and taxi drivers, office workers.
It was further added that all protocols/instructions issued thus far regarding the workplace are hereby updated to reflect the scrapping of the obligation for workers and visitors to wear gloves, but it was emphasised that “it goes without saying that employees who conduct cleaning activities must continue to wear gloves.”
It was finally mentioned that for the cases where the use of gloves is strongly recommended, proper hand hygiene should be followed after their discard either using an alcoholic solution or washing with soap and water.