"Lack of protocol for latex allergy sufferers"

About: Scarborough General Hospital

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As a patient with a Latex Allergy, the only two points of protocol observed by the Gastro-Enterology Department at Scarborough Hospital were that I was scheduled to have my procedure as the first patient of the day and I was given a red wristband. The proposed room for the procedure was lined with latex gloves in open containers. This is not acceptable since Latex allergens are airborne. Indeed, my nose was already complaining about the presence of the Latex in the strongest terms by severely itching. The room looked unkempt and, frankly, grubby. The Staff Nurse actually sat on the 'bed' for the initial consultation before the procedure, contravening all Health and Safety Rules since there was potential for transference of germs from her uniform. There is no such thing as a degree of severity for a person suffering from a Latex allergy. Even the mildest symptoms have the potential to escalate into life-threatening anaphylaxis at any time. This, although uncommon, usually happens between 20 to 60 minutes following exposure to the allergen. In my opinion, the room did not provide a suitable sterile environment for invasive medical procedures. I worry for those with the same allergy who are not as 'clued up' as myself and will be taking this matter up with PALS. P.S. Thank you for bearing with me. One last thing, the above was not the whole sorry story, lest I lose your interest prematurely!

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Response from Scarborough General Hospital

Thank you for your posting. We do take comments made very seriously and we would like the opportunity to investigate the particular concerns you have raised. Please contact our Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) on 01723 342434 or email pals.scarborough@york.nhs.uk and they will be pleased to help.

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