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Hebrides News


Hygiene issues at Balivanich hospital

19 April 2017

Western Isles must address issues with cleanliness and infection control at the Balivanich hospital say inspectors.

Healthcare Environment Inspectorate (HEI) conducted an unannounced inspection in February to check on progress since drawing up an improvement action plan from October.

Further issues were found and HEI made two further requirements and a recommendation.

►  Cleanliness improvements after hospital inspection

To meet a previous shortcoming, the health board had arranged a training session  to make staff aware of infection control precautions. However, inspectors found several night-shift employees were excluded as they were off duty.

Their report said the majority of staff they spoke to did not know how to deal with blood and body fluid spills correctly.

Even after reading the guidance on display, staff were unsure about the amount of disinfectant to use.

A “significant number” of infection control policies and standard operating procedures were out of date or had not been through the health board’s governance process for more than two years - despite previous promises they would be updated by last November.

Seven beds in used were chipped and damaged despite a previous requirement ensure they were clean and safe to minimise the risk of cross-infection.

Some patient chairs labelled as condemned remained in use. Inspectors were told that “no money was available” to purchase new chairs.

Despite a health board promise, no lock was fitted on the room storing used, reusable medical instruments.

Sara Twaddle, of HEI, said: “This inspection was a follow-up on the requirements made in our previous report from October 2016. During our inspection of Uist and Barra Hospital we noted progress has been made to address these issues.

“However, this inspection has resulted in two new requirements. NHS Western Isles must ensure that all infection prevention and control policies and standard operating procedures are reviewed and continue to be reviewed at least every two years.

“The board has drawn up an action plan and we will continue to monitor the cleanliness of Uist and Barra Hospital at future inspections.”

►   Cleanliness improvements after hospital inspection