LONDON: A UK research team has developed a beard covering technique, called ‘Singh Thattha’, to enable bearded medics wear face masks while on frontline COVID-19 duties without the need for shaving.
The technique has proven effective in initial trials.
The team had aimed to find a solution to protect doctors from ethnic minorities, including Sikhs, because shaving is a mandatory pre-requisite.
“Because shaving was a mandatory pre-requisite for wearing respirator masks, many members of the faith-observant bearded community, such as Sikh, Jewish and Muslim, have been affected and have had to face the dilemma of redeployment from frontline healthcare jobs involving exposure to COVID-19,” said Randhawa, Professor of Diversity in Public Health at the University of Bedfordshire and Director of the university’s Institute for Health Research.
“Redeployment to other areas incurs a loss of skillset and need for re-training, and junior doctors have had their training impacted,” he said.