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a blog by Chris Barrow


We saw the toilet roll, hand sanitiser and pasta panic come and go in the early days of Covid-19 (doesn't that seem like a long time ago now?).

Then, a few weeks ago, a PPE panic erupted in dentistry, spawning Buying Groups (including my own "not-for-profit" group, who have placed over £400,000 in orders and have been taking delivery this week).

We do seem to like a good panic.

It seems that the lure of self-assembly furniture and home furnishings was enough to create miles-long queues at Ikea last week as those who have been at the D.I.Y during lockdown may have been under orders to "get it finished".

So what do we have in short supply this morning, enough to send us into herding behaviour?

  1. Marmite - it's in short supply due to the lack of brewer's yeast. You can only buy the smallest size. "Marmageddon" it's been called. I'm worried;

  2. Masks and fit testing - which ones, where and how?

To quote a friend who messaged me overnight:

"The new elephant in the room: Masks!

Dentists and Corporates getting in a right old pickle.

Millions of fakes floating around. It can be hard to spot a fake.

Fit testing required but it seems some practices and corporates may not be bothering. Those who want to do it properly can't find a fit tester.

LDCs trying to stop certified fit testers from even fit testing their own staff, let alone other dental teams as it has to be an accredited fit2fit tester!! And there aren't too many of those!

HSE legal requirement in the UK to fit test a FFP level mask.....but no where else in Europe!

Fit testing very basic and probably only 50% who pass are genuine passes.

What a mess!!"

In the spirit of good panic - please may I add another incoming scarcity to your list?


Just you wait and see.

Of course, you could take an alternative approach.

Stay calm.

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