12.05.20

Plastics manufacturer focused on adaptable, reusable PPE for NHS

Words provided by ICL Tech Ltd, editorially reviewed by National Health Executive

As the scale of the Covid-19 crisis unfolded, UK plastics manufacturer ICL Tech Ltd joined an army of businesses repurposing their operations to help serve and protect the NHS and other key workers repeatedly exposed to the virus,

After being asked for help by Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in March, the company’s design and development team liaised with medical consultants before prototyping and shipping its first TechPPE product in 24 hours – a reusable face shield/visor.

Design of the unique visor was approved by Alder Hey’s ID team the same day, with a first batch of 350 being used in theatres by the end of the week. 20,000 TechPPE visors are now in use at the hospital.

The manufacturer has also designed and prototyped novel adaptable and reusable barrier gowns and full protective hoods which are currently being tested at the hospital.

Approval

ICL Tech’s visor was one of four to be approved out of 20 visors that were tested by NHS Scotland in early April to assess protection level from splashes and droplets during various degrees of tilt and rotation. The results highlighted that the visor’s foam headband was very popular with users, as was its durability/sustainability using dilute actichlor to clean for reuse.

The visor achieved BSi Category II CE marking certification on April 20, 2020.

Word of mouth and positive reviews have resulted in orders from 10 NHS Scotland and NHS England Trusts, including an order for 90,000 from Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board. The company has increased its production capacity to around 10,000 visors per day and is committed to supplying health workers and care homes with PPE throughout the Covid-19 crisis.

Visor1

CAD drawing of the TechPPE visor, which achieved the BSi Category II CE marking certification on April 20, 2020.
 

Mark McCracken, General Manager at ICL Tech Ltd, said: “We’ve optimised our design for manufacture procedures and achieved cost savings to supply affordable, quality PPE. We’ve listened carefully to feedback from clinicians who want PPE to be adaptable for comfort and fit, and of a design and quality that heightens protection and enables reuse.”

“Category III CE certification is imminent for our gowns and hoods, which will be made available via TechPPE, a dedicated point of contact for our PPE. We’re also supplying a range of other PPE products designed to help support the NHS including polycarbonate sneeze screens, bed partitions, cloth face masks for visitors, disposable face masks, and ear savers.”

“Our aim is to continue supplying innovative vital protective equipment that makes it easier and safer for frontline workers to do their jobs. Our TechPPE team are set up to provide a rapid response and fulfil volume orders. No one in the public healthcare sector should be put at risk through lack of fit-for-purpose PPE.”

Since being founded in 1973, ICL Tech Ltd has manufactured parts and products for most industries including medical, oil and gas, transport and financial. The company is ISO 9001:2015 certified, and a member of ICL Plastics Ltd Group which has six plastics manufacturing and distribution bases throughout Scotland and in England.

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