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Monday 11th December 2017

Walsall hospital found in breach of hygiene guidelines

30th October 2008

Walsall Manor Hospital will be ordered to strengthen its hygiene and infection control codes, after inspectors found a number of mattresses were “stained with what looked like bodily fluids”.

The Healthcare Commission, which is inspecting all NHS acute trusts over the next year, made an unannounced visit to Walsall Manor Hospital in July where they found the trust was in “material breach” of its duty to provide a “clean and appropriate environment for healthcare”.

Inspectors found 30 clean and soiled mattresses stored close to each other, of which 19 (63 per cent) appeared to have bodily fluid stains.

The trust, which has some of the lowest infection rates for MRSA and Clostridium difficile (C diff), has since agreed to carry out a full audit of all mattresses and took delivery of more than 500 new electric beds to replace the old ones earlier this month.

Sue James, the trust’s chief executive, said: “It was reassuring to see that the areas highlighted by the inspectors as needing action tied in very closely to our own assessments, and in most areas action had already been taken before the inspectors’ visit.

“In particular we had already begun a major project to replace all our beds and mattresses at the Manor. The replacement process is now underway and will be completed by the end of this week, when we will have replaced all the beds in the hospital with new electric beds and thicker, more comfortable and hygienic mattresses.”

The Healthcare Commission also told the trust to review their infection control programme, ensure all staff receive appropriate training, maintain cleaning standards in all clinical areas and that decontamination of equipment is clearly assigned.

Inspectors are due to make further checks next year.

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