Clod Ensemble's Performing Medicine, the team that delivers creative training for healthcare professionals and students, has responded to a plea from University College Hospital in London to help their staff cope with “uncomfortable, hot and sweaty” Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that makes communication between team members and patients difficult. Dr Beth Thomas at the hospital said: “Many of our healthcare professionals have to be in the full Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for a very, very, very long time, and this time spent is only going to increase…by the time they remove all the PPE they are exhausted. Is this something actors are used to?”
In response the team has created a sharable digital resource for those coping with PPE, featuring advice from professional performers who are used to working in restrictive clothing and equipment. Designed to be shared on people's phones, it includes tips from companies and productions such as War Horse, In The Night Garden Live, Kneehigh, His Dark Materials and Figs in Wigs.
Suzy Willson, Director of Performing Medicine, said: “We have been working with medical students and healthcare professionals for over 15 years and continue to do so over this extremely challenging period as best we can… This current pandemic presents us with a radical moment in which to imagine and implement a profound partnership between culture, health and social care - with the need to support both isolated people and healthcare professionals becoming ever more apparent.”