New Guidance on the use of Surgical Masks in the Healthcare Setting in the Context of the COVID-19 Pandemic


This guidance replaces previous guidance on the use of surgical masks in healthcare settings in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. This guidance is for immediate implementation. The content will be incorporated into other Infection Prevention and Control guidance documents as they are updated.

  • Surgical masks should be worn by healthcare workers when providing care to patients within 2m of a patient, regardless of the COVID-19 status of the patient.
  • Surgical masks should be worn by all healthcare workers for all encounters, of 15 minutes or more, with other healthcare workers in the workplace where a distance of 2m cannot be maintained.

My Hero is You! A beautiful book for Children to help explain COVID 19

My Hero is you

This book was a project developed by the Inter-Agency Standing Committee Reference Group on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings (IASC MHPSS RG). The project was supported by global, regional and country based experts from Member Agencies of the IASC MHPSS RG, in addition to parents, caregivers, teachers and children in 104 countries.  The book was shared through storytelling to children in several countries affected by COVID-19. Feedback from children, parents and caregivers was then used to review and update the story. Over 1,700 children, parents, caregivers and teachers from around the world took the time to share with us how they were coping with the COVID-19 pandemic. A big thank you to these children, their parents, caregivers and teachers for completing our surveys and influencing this story. This is a story developed for and by children around the world.

Download here:

Dementia- Helpful Resources During Covid 19


Helpful resources that may help with social isolation during COVID-19

If you are at home caring for a person living with dementia and are experiencing less social contact we have prepared a collection of resources which we hope you will find helpful during these times of uncertainty

Sage Advocacy -Covid 19 Update


COVID-19 UPDATE: Sage Advocacy continues to be available for vulnerable people who need support. We are at 1850 719 400, 8am-10pm, 7 days a week. If we cannot answer your call, we will phone back within an hour. When urgent staff can be with people, anywhere in Ireland, within 24 hours.

Temporary Accommodation for Healthcare Workers

Temporary accommodation, close to your work, is being set up for healthcare workers affected by COVID-19.

A nominated local manager will manage referrals received from:

  • Community Healthcare Organisations (CHOs)
  • Hospital Groups
  • National Ambulance Service (NAS)
  • Private nursing homes

Healthcare workers that can get temporary accommodation

All healthcare workers can apply for temporary accommodation.

This includes staff in:

  • HSE
  • community healthcare
  • Section 38 and 39 organisations including voluntary hospital staff
  • National Ambulance Service
  • private nursing homes
  • long-term disability and mental health residential facilities

Home support and personal assistant staff may also apply. This includes staff directly employed and employed through voluntary private providers. This applies to Older Persons Services, Disability Service and Mental Health Services.

Healthcare workers eligible to apply for temporary accommodation

As a healthcare worker, you can apply for temporary accommodation if you:

  • live with family members that are self-isolating and you cannot return home
  • live with vulnerable persons
  • require emergency accommodation due to urgent response or mitigating factors
  • require accommodation in order to facilitate rosters
  • share accommodation where you are at an increased risk of getting or spreading COVID-19 (this does not include couples or co-habiting family members who normally live together)
  • returned from overseas and are contracted to work and require accommodation
  • live in congregated domestic living arrangements, for example, a hostel, a direct provision centre

Short and longer-term accommodation may be made available, depending on your needs. This will be decided by your manager.

Healthcare workers living with a group of people

If you live with a group of people you should consider your eligibility to move to alternative temporary accommodation.

This will help you to:

  • reduce interactions with people outside the workplace and the home
  • avoid communal sleeping areas
  • avoid crowded areas
  • avoid spending more than 15 minutes in close contact with other people
  • prevent spread in long-term residential settings and the community

Getting alternative temporary accommodation

Where possible, accommodation will be located as close as possible to your place of work. Where transport is required, local arrangements will be made.

Process for getting accommodation

Submit a temporary accommodation referral form to your line manager.

Your manager will review the request and make the necessary arrangements.

Your manager will let you know if your request is approved and book your accommodation.

You must inform your manager as soon as possible if you wish to cancel the accommodation booking.

Discuss any queries you have about the accommodation with your manager.

To protect yourself and others from COVID-19, you should:

  • limit the amount of contact with accommodation staff and other residents
  • limit interaction with staff from different clinical settings and, where possible, not mix with staff from other clinical care systems
  • practice physical distancing (minimum 2 metres)
  • stay in your room as much as reasonably practicable
  • minimise time in communal areas to reduce the risk of infection to colleagues
  • when in lifts try and limit to 1 or 2 people at a time, or to use the stairs if appropriate
  • eat in your room where possible - if meals are provided with the accommodation, sit at tables at least 2 metres apart
  • place all rubbish in waste in bins provided
  • clean hands regularly with soap and water for 20 seconds or use an alcohol gel
  • do not allow visitors into your accommodation

WHO – Hand Hygiene Technique

Hand-washing Steps Using the WHO Technique - YouTube

Proper hand hygiene is the most important thing you can do to prevent the spread of germs and to protect yourself and others from illnesses. When not done carefully, germs on the fingertips, palms and thumbs, and between fingers, are often missed. This video demonstrates the World Health Organization (WHO) technique for hand-washing. Watch the video to be sure you are washing your hands thoroughly.