Big hand for clean wards

DELIGHTED: Domestics (left to right) Reda El-Sayed, Karen Piggford, Barbara Saunders, Fiona England, Joanne Baillie and Sandra Stamper
DELIGHTED: Domestics (left to right) Reda El-Sayed, Karen Piggford, Barbara Saunders, Fiona England, Joanne Baillie and Sandra Stamper

YOU’VE got to hand it to the staff within a health trust.

Their high standards of cleanliness have come in for praise from a monitoring team which completes regular surveys.

In fact, it is so good it has reached a level which is better than ever before.

Fourteen wards and units within North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust have now received plaudits for having consistently high standards of cleanliness.

The trust’s independent quality monitoring team completes a thorough inspection of all clinical departments on a monthly basis. Results show many of them achieved an annual average of over 95 per cent in cleanliness.

Trust chiefs today said that was thanks to the constant efforts of the domestic staff.

The checks are part of the Standards of Hospital Cleanliness guidance which applies to all hospitals across the NHS.

Director of nursing, patient safety and quality, Sue Smith said: “We have had our best cleaning results ever this year in terms of both visual monitoring and hygiene swabbing.” She said she had written to all the ward managers to let them know how happy she is that their wards and departments have been kept so clean.

She said she was “very pleased” with the efforts of all the domestics.

Assistant director of facilities and hygiene, Sue Shannon, added: “The staff who have consistently achieved a ‘Gold star standard’ of cleanliness in our patient areas should be very proud of themselves.”

She said the achievement was all the more worthy because of the circumstances behind it.

She added: “With the hospital being busier than ever it really is no easy feat.”

Trust bosses say they are always looking at ways of improving the fight against infection.

Current methods include a team of “deep clean” staff using a hydrogen peroxide vapour fogging system to clean the rooms.

And while the ward is empty, equipment can be treated as well. Anything that needs to be repaired or painted can also be looked at.

New equipment has also been brought in.

New Nanoclave cabinets, which were recently delivered to the trust, can kill all bugs on items including electrical goods and machinery in just 60 seconds.

Using ultraviolet light, it can decontaminate hard-to-reach areas in a process that is clinically effective against all infections including MRSA and C Difficile.

The units, which will be used at both the University Hospital of North Tees and the University Hospital of Hartlepool sites, can be easily moved around wards and buildings.

Items that can be cleaned in the cabinets range from medical equipment such as blood pressure cuffs and monitors, and stethoscopes as well as items including computer keyboards, mobile phones, staff security cards.