bda scotland advises not to use face masksBDA Scotland is urging dentists not to use out-of-date face masks as ministers fail to provide evidence of safety.

Last week Dentistry Scotland reported on some NHS dentists receiving face masks almost a decade past their use-by date. At the time BDA Scotland said it will examine evidence of the revalidation process to ensure it is sufficiently robust.

Following this and without robust evidence to support claims of ‘revalidated’ face masks, BDA Scotland is advising clinicians not to use the stocks of PPE.

‘Dentists willingly donated their PPE to hospices, pharmacies and hospitals at the onset of this pandemic,’ David McColl, chair of the British Dental Assocation’s Scottish Dental Practice Committee said. ‘In return the Scottish government offered us out of date masks, and no evidence they are safe to use.

‘Sadly, our engagement with the authorities has generated more questions than answers.

‘No dentist should use this kit until Ministers provide hard proof it offers needed protection to both staff and patients.’

Face mask fiasco

The BDA claims it has repeatedly sought clarity from NHS National Services Scotland (NSS) about the face masks.

It says NHS NSS has failed to provide proof of robust assessments of the out-of-date masks. It says none of the measures in the test certificate achieve a ‘pass’.

Further, the manufacturer (3M) has not verified the material or offered clear reassurance over the masks.

‘The near decade-old expiry dates on PPE supplied by the Scottish government has raised serious questions over the safety of patients, dentists and their teams,’ Mr McColl said last week.

‘This is not a position the government should put any healthcare professional in.’