Sonographer COVID-19 practice and safety advice
Updated as of 2 August 2021
Sonographers have an essential role, providing medical diagnostic ultrasound examinations for medical practitioners to diagnose and treat patients. During the COVID-19 pandemic it is essential that sonographers look after their health and wellbeing, as well as the health and wellbeing of patients and colleagues.
To assist you, below is professional guidance and other resources to support you to continue providing an essential service, while protecting your own health.
ROLL UP SONOGRAPHERS!
The Australasian Sonographers Association (ASA) encourages all sonographers to get their Covid-19 vaccinations.
With so many sonographers working on the front-line in healthcare, we urge all sonographers to proactively seek to get vaccinated to keep themselves, their families, their patients and their communities safe.
For updated advice and information on booking your Covid-19 vaccine, please visit our Australia and New Zealand Government Links page.
AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL BUDGET UPDATE (PPE)
Lack of PPE was a major issue for all healthcare workers including sonographers during the pandemic and a key learning from the COVID-19 pandemic is the need to increase Australia’s domestic production of these critical supplies. As a result the federal government committed $3.3 million to increase the National Medical Stockpile with the purchase of masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE) and pharmaceuticals so in the event of a pandemic or other public health emergency, all Australians, especially vulnerable and at-risk groups and health care workers, will have access to these essential medical supplies.
PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT (PPE)
Access to Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
The ASA continues to monitor any issues regarding PPE and is working with the government on this.
The letter to governments calls for all private and public clinical radiology departments and practices to have access to PPE throughout the pandemic.
- ASA Statement on the Australian Government response to PPE access
- ASA Position Statement: Return of diagnostic imaging services during COVID-19
- RANZCR COVID taskforce has issued a statement about Interventional Radiology work and minimising the use of PPE
Use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
New Zealand and Australia, and its states and territories, have produced information for health professionals in their local area regarding the use of PPE.
Below is ultrasound and sonographer specific information for appropriate use of PPE.
AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT: Personal protective equipment (PPE) advice for the health workforce (26 October 2020)
- AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT: Coronavirus (COVID-19) wearing personal protective equipment for allied health professionals video (25 May 2020)
Infection control and safe performance
Infection control training
AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT: COVID-19 Infection Control Training (Reviewed 27 May 2020)
Preparation and cleaning of ultrasound room
Preparation and cleaning of ultrasound equipment and transducers
Sonographers work in such close proximity to patients, and the challenge is very real and you are likely worried about your own health and fear that if you contract COVID-19 you may pass it on to others and your family. Therefore it is important for sonographers to be across what measures can be in place for your safety and the safety of your colleagues and patients.
Recommendations for changed arrangements during COVID-19 will vary depending on a sonographers area or practice and the workplace. Following are statements and information from ASA affiliate organisations and industry partners which contain recommendations regarding ultrasound examinations during the coronavirus pandemic.
These cover advice on scheduling appointments and performing ultrasound during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition they also cover delaying non-essential examinations. The ISUOG statements are also relevant to radiology practices.
- CSANZ: Consensus Statement: Rural and Remote Cardiology During the COVID-19 Pandemic (11 April, 2020)
- CSANZ: COVID-19 and acute heart failure: screening the critically ill (10 Apr, 2020)
- CSANZ: Consensus Guidelines for Interventional Cardiology Services During COVID-19 Pandemic in Australia and New Zealand (29 March. 2020)
- CSANZ: Position Statement on the Management of Cardiac Electrophysiology and Cardiac Implantable Electronic Devices in Australia duing the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Living Document (11 June .2020)
- ISUOG: Safety Committee Position Statement: safe performance of obstetric and gynecological scans and equipment cleaning in the context of COVID-19
Wiley has made more than 5,000 COVID-19-related articles freely available to provide rapid access to COVID-19 research and COVID-19-related articles. The Melbourne Centre for Data Science also offers free access to their Seminar Series. A key recording in this series focuses on the role of biostatistics and data science in the pandemic, click below to access.
- WILEY: Free access to 5000 COVID-19 related articles
- MCDS Seminar Series: A seat at the table - The key role of biostatistics and data science in the COVID-19 pandemic
Affilliate organisations and information
If you require further information please email firstname.lastname@example.org