Friendly Face Mask Founder Sonia Carley image

Sonia Carley, Founder of Friendly Face Mask, is petitioning for technical and financial support for her unique medical-grade face masks, which are suitable for both lipreading and use with hearing aids, to be made available for NHS use.

After contacting her local MP for Salisbury, John Glen notifying him of the masks, Sonia says she has received no support to help her get the masks to be used by the NHS.

Although John initially shared the products on social media, Sonia is describing the inaction as a “huge social injustice” and is now calling on the government support her technically and financially to meet PPE manufacturing regulations and get the masks into NHS use.

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“The government should be assisting the public and the NHS by backing my masks and ensuring that I have the professional and financial support made available to me to enable getting them into use,” said Sonia.

Since the 1st of June, Sonia has supplied over a thousand of the reusable masks, with all proceeds from the sales being used to fund the technical development of the Type IIR NHS mask.

Working in conjunction with MHRA, The Surgical Materials Testing Laboratory (SMTL) and Medilink, Sonia describes getting the masks approved as a “technical minefield” due to a lack of testing standards for this type of mask.

As she has received no support from government yet, Sonia will now be undertaking an offshore campaign to secure funding to pay for the technical guidance required.

With the recent announcement that face coverings will become mandatory in shops and supermarkets from the 24th of July in England, and as face coverings are now a legal requirement on public transport in England, the need for face masks that are suitable for people with communication difficulties is perhaps more important than ever.

Under the new rules for obligatory face coverings in shops and supermarkets, people who do not wear a face covering will face a fine of up to £100, whilst children under 11 and those with certain disabilities will be exempt.

According to details provided by the Health and Social Care Secretary, shops have the ability to refuse entry to those not wearing a face covering and can call the police who have formal enforcement powers and can issue a fine.

The introduction of compulsory face coverings in shops and supermarkets from next week has received a mixed reception from various mobility retailers in the sector.

For instance, Veronica Downing, Managing Director of Suffolk-based mobility retailer Rehability, highlighted the problem of face coverings when helping customers: “The main issue of wearing a mask is as much to do with communication, as it is with effectiveness against spreading the virus. A lot of our customers need to see our faces and in particular our mouths, as many are hard of hearing or have early dementia.

“So much communication is facial and non-verbal and we provide a friendly, helpful and understanding customer service. Equally, customers may spend more than 15 minutes discussing their enquiry and wanting equipment demonstrated.”

https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Friendly-Face-Masks.jpg?fit=900%2C897&ssl=1https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Friendly-Face-Masks.jpg?resize=150%2C150&ssl=1Sarah SarsbyGovernment & Local AuthoritiesNewsroomSector Newsface mask for hearing aids,face mask for lip reading,face mask petition,face mask policy England,Friendly Face Mask,mobility retailers,Rehability,Type IIR NHS maskSonia Carley, Founder of Friendly Face Mask, is petitioning for technical and financial support for her unique medical-grade face masks, which are suitable for both lipreading and use with hearing aids, to be made available for NHS use.After contacting her local MP for Salisbury, John Glen notifying him of...News, views & products for mobility, access and independent living professionals