"Hospital hygiene and protocol"

About: Raigmore Hospital / General Medicine

(as a carer),

My husband was having a shunt removed from his hand which had been used for IV purposes. The nurse removed it and in doing so, accidentally dropped the cotton ball which they'd had in their hand on to the floor.

Before either of us could react the nurse scooped it up off the floor and applied it to my husband's bleeding hand. We were horrified.

The hospital we knew had recently had a c. diff outbreak but we hadn't seen much cleaning being done on the particular ward he was on (we did see cleaning staff busy making deep-cleaning the ward above which had been affected by c. diff that week). So this was just awful.

Not surprisingly (though not a result of the contaminated cotton ball), my husband went home and discovered soon thereafter that he had peritonitis - contracted after he had been moved up to that supposedly-deep-cleaned ward! Not confidence-inspiring, to say the least.

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Responses

Response from Maimie Thompson, Head of Public Relations and Engagement, Chief Executive's Office, NHS Highland

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Dear Concerned Spouse

This is really disappointing to hear and I want to apologise for our failings. These sorts of things shake confidence in care which is not good and adds to worries.

I have discussed this with our Board Nurse Director and she has asked her Lead Nurse for the area to look into this for us. If you have any further information you would like to share then please get in touch. You can contact me 01463 704722 or maimie.thompson@nhs.net

I hope your husband is feeling very much better.

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Response from Natalie Deacon, Engagement and Support Officer, Patient Opinion Scotland

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Hi ConcernedSpouse

Thank you getting in touch and letting us know the wrong hospital was tagged in your story. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused in getting the correct response sooner. We have now amended the hospital and notified the board a change has been made.

Thank you again for sharing your story on Patient Opinion

Take Care

Natalie (One of the Patient Opinion team)

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Response from Maimie Thompson, Head of Public Relations and Engagement, Chief Executive's Office, NHS Highland

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Well that answers that query. Interesting when our Lead Nurse looked into this she did feed-back that the procedure described was not one we would expect to have carried out in that hospital. Thanks for letting me know.

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Response from Maimie Thompson, Head of Public Relations and Engagement, Chief Executive's Office, NHS Highland

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Hello again

Since your posting I have been in touch with senior nursing leadership team in Raigmore to feed-back your experience and observations. This is what the charge nurse had to say about it:

"Shocking to hear that anyone would use a cotton wool ball off the floor. I discussed this yesterday at our ward meeting which is minuted. No-one admitted to having done this which is disappointing. I will be observing practice as much as possible. The minutes of the meeting will be displayed for all staff to read. I really am sorry and can only apologise to the family."

I know this doesn't make up for what happened but I hope it goes someway to reassure you that we take feed-back seriously and that senior managers are aware of your feed-back.

Kind regards

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Update posted by ConcernedSpouse (a carer)

Thank you very much, the follow-up is much appreciated! I'm not surprised no one admitted to this, but at the same time, the nurse did it so quickly, almost without even thinking, that perhaps what she'd done did not even register with her.

Whatever the case, hopefully it won't happen to anyone else, and I very much appreciate the response.

Kind regards.

Response from Maimie Thompson, Head of Public Relations and Engagement, Chief Executive's Office, NHS Highland

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Dear Concerned Spouse

One of my colleagues, who has just read my last response, has fed back to me how he feels I could improve my response and here is how? The people who looked into this are real with names and responsibilities and I should have reflected that.

The Charge Nurse was Andrew Wilson and its Andrew who fed-back. The Lead Nurse for Raigmore is Brenda Wilson and the Nurse Manager Iona McGauran. They all were aware of your feed-back, Andrew, Iona or Brenda would happy to meet or speak to you if you wished to follow things up. But tell us what you think?

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Update posted by ConcernedSpouse (a carer)

Thank you for the further reply. Seeing as how the problem is being addressed, I don't think there is a need to meet or speak with anyone - it is enough to know that they are aware that it happened, and that hopefully having discussed it with staff, it won't happen again to anyone else. Many thanks for following up.

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