"Infection control could be taken more seriously"

About: Worcestershire Royal Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as the patient),

A&E displaying large warning signs for Norovirus - but during my 5 hour stay I only saw one person besides myself (a visitor) use the hand gel entering and leaving the A&E dept - that includes patients and staff!

That is appalling - surely the reception staff and triage nurses should be asking everyone to use it?

Also no evidence of cleaning in unit, although the toilets were inspected during the 5 hours I was laying on a trolley. Infection control needs to be enforced more aggressively - no wonder patients pick up bugs and viruses.

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Responses

Response from Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust

We would like to apologise that your experience in A&E at Worcestershire Royal Hospital did not meet our expectations.

Safe, quality care remains our top priority and the prevention of infection plays a huge part of this. We take infection control very seriously, setting ourselves the very highest standards and maintain a 'zero tolerance' approach to infection.

All nurses carry anti-bacterial alcohol hand gel in order to clean their hands as they work and we encourage all staff, visitors and patients to follow good hand hygiene precautions.

Large notices are displayed asking visitors to clean hands as well as movement activated recorded messages, played to remind staff and patients to use hand-gel as they pass by.

There is a robust cleaning schedule in operation both by nurses and cleaning staff. This happens from 7.30am until 3.30pm daily, with supplementary cleaning on request if required.

The ward manager carries out weekly cleaning audits to ensure high standards are maintained. I would always encourage all patients and relatives to speak to the nurse in charge of the department if they have an area of concern so it can be immediately rectified.

Clare Bush, Ward Sister, A&E