Culturally appropriate PPE designed by Warwick company

Contechs Multi Cultural headwear

Warwick-based Contechs Medical, a division of the leading automotive design, engineering, and recruitment specialists Contechs, has developed a range of culturally appropriate PPE headwear to help the UK’s medical and care professionals combat against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Branded HairTech, Contechs Medical has produced two types of single use PPE garments – a hijab and a multi-hairstyle hat – that will be made available for all sexes in the black and minority ethnic community.

User testing is now complete and positive feedback received for both garments by the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust  Originally designed and developed for UHB, Contechs Medical is offering the culturally bespoke PPE out to all of the Trusts within the West Midlands and is also planning to distribute nationally.

Established following the government’s call to arms for increased PPE supply in March last year, Contechs Medical manufactures protective products such as gowns, shrouds, masks, and face shields after a substantial investment in new production facilities, state of the art equipment, and quality control systems

Pete Jarvis, Managing Director of Contechs, said: “We quickly identified that culturally appropriate PPE – especially headgear – wasn’t available to those with religious or cultural beliefs.  Indeed, this isn’t just limited to medical environments, it’s the same for any situation where hair has to be covered such as scientific research labs and food preparation areas, for example.

Simon Clarke, Managing Director, BHA Shared Procurement Services added: “Contechs was one of the early adopters following a call from the West Midlands Combined Authority and University Hospital Birmingham Trust.  It was a critical time when the Trusts were not receiving the necessary PPE to keep staff safe.

“Although new to the sector, Contechs was unfazed drawing upon their manufacturing prowess they consistently pushed the boundaries.  They were the first to come forward with a surgical gown design, the quality of which was far superior to that being used nationally and for which they have now received a CE mark.

“Now they at the forefront of the development of a new range of PPE equipment to meet our cultural ethnicity requirements. It is quite astonishing that this need has not been catered for yet so it’s great to see companies such as Contechs applying an innovative and culturally sensitive approach to PPE in order to make medical and healthcare professionals feel more comfortable in the workplace.

“As a manufacturer Contechs has gone above and beyond and has consistently demonstrated that irrespective of the challenge ahead they have the resilience and sustainability to meet the demands of the NHS.”