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hygiene in hospitals

(19 Posts)
stitch Sat 14-May-05 22:53:55

hi, following on from some other threads recently, thought id share this.
the nhs has contracted out the cleaning. so the people who come in to do the cleaning change all the time. and they have some sort of insurance or something regulation where they cant clean above elbow height. in the olden days matron would make sure it got cleaned. but coz its the contractors, well, basically it doesnt get cleaned. period.
and as for the doctors nurses thing, no one listens to doctors. nurses are rude to them, managers aare rude to them, cleaners are rude. they get paid very little for the hours they work, but get all the aggro.

stitch Sat 14-May-05 22:55:00

to sort out the nhs, a good thing to do would be to fire 90% of the managers, who do sod all. and let the doctors and nurses do their jobs.
oh, and give them a little respect too

misdee Sat 14-May-05 22:55:55

well at harefield they wipe down all surfaces, abover doorways, shelves etc. they are very thorough.

stitch Sat 14-May-05 23:02:20

as they should be misdee. after all, its a bit pre-victorian age to think of a hospital being a dirty place.

misdee Sat 14-May-05 23:03:01

QE2 is filthy, lister is cleaner.

spend too much time in hospitals.

Flossam Sat 14-May-05 23:22:55

I have seen cleaners doing some shocking things on the wards. Rinsing out floor mops in hand washing sinks etc. Also having no respect for patient dignity, walking in through closed curtains to empty bins while a patient is being washed and having a go at me for telling them not to - saying the bin has to be emptied 'now'. One in particular is very rude where I work. Told me I would give birth to a baby the size of a 3 month old as I was so big - cause I was eating too much (DS was 7.7lbs thank you!), told another girl her hair looked crap, and that another had a huge arse. So, you say? This was all on the same day all to our faces.

From what I see the majority of cleaners hate their job (understandable?) and have no pride in their work at all. They are cliquey and it is hard to interact or integrate with them. It seems a very us and them culture. One cleaner said she wasn't allowed to clean out a room that had held an infected patient in case she became infected, and that it was our job. It isn't. IMO, nurses do often do the cleaning in this type of room as it means it is ready for occupancy quicker. We do it to the best of our ability. But it is not our job and not what we have been specifically trained for.

Cleaners do need to be brought back in to be trust employees, and I think this is happening gradually. Some I have worked with are great and an assett to their companies. But all the better for them to be an assett to the NHS, who badly needs them atm. I believe it is no co-incidence that MRSA and other HAI (hospital acquired infection) rates have risen since the tory government contracted out hospital cleaning.

lilsmum Sat 14-May-05 23:27:03

oh dont get me started, seen the topic and thought aaaarrrgggghhhh, i watched the cleaners in the hospital my dd was in recently, they didnt wipe anywhere just seemed to use that floor buffer thing continuously, nothing else! and as for mrsa, i am not surprised it has gone like wild fire, as i also NOT ONCE witnessed any nurse or doctor use the handgel nor wash their hands, and were dealing with canulars, wounds etc, and when i looked most of the handgel dispensers were full its utterly disgusting! and this was on a baby/kids ward i dread the thought of dd having to ever go back in that dump!

Newbarnsleygirl Sat 14-May-05 23:29:05

After having dd I would have said that giving birth in Hospital was a good thing but if I was to have another baby now both dh and I have agreed that it will be a home birth.

Theres about 3/4 wards always shut in out local hospital because of MRSA.

misdee Sat 14-May-05 23:29:27

Harefield has all paitents being transpferred checked for MRSA before they admit them.

i have noticed in some hospitals the person cleaning the floors/changing the beds, also hand out the meals. At harefield easch task is done by different members of staff/ the hand gels are used. we are encournaged to use them on entering and leaving the ward. even my dd2 knows to use them.

swedishmum Sun 15-May-05 01:01:50

Mum was recently in William Harvey in Ashford for nearly a month. Gel was available everywhere but hardly anyone I saw used it, especially staff. It could be they had just used it on ward (though I doubt it) but even so not using it as instructed on entering and leaving wards hardly educates visitors to do so. And this was the week wards were closed down for sickness bugs!

triceratops Sun 15-May-05 10:16:11

The hospital I was in recently was spotless. (cumberland general) The staff had badges on saying "ask me to wash my hands" I thought that this was a good idea.

All the staff who dealt with me conspicuously washed their hands in front of me before they touched me apart from one nurse who had dermatitis and who put on a fresh pair of gloves.

In my local hospital the conditions are a lot less clean, but I cleaned my room thoroughly before I left so the next person would be more comfortable (I had taken cleaning equipment in with me). I think that the hospitals would be cleaner if patients took some of the responsibility and pointed out to a member of staff if they saw something that needed cleaning. If you know that you have left the bathroom covered in blood (unavoidable sometimes) then you should tell someone so that it can be sorted out before the next person has to use it.

Donbean Sun 15-May-05 10:55:59

This makes my blood boil.
On commencement of my shift i have to spend the first 30 mins cleaning my area and performing safety checks. This is policy and proceedure.
This must be done before i even touch my patient.
We are stringent and strict, we are meticulous and carry out hand washing as a matter of fact, and use hand gels in between.
We still have MRSA which patients either bring in with them as a pre existing infection or they contract it while with us. (it may already be in the system and as we swab for it...hey presto, we find it.)
The cleaners that we have , have been with us for years, are part of our team and are bloody hard workers.
Give credit were credit is due and dont tar us all with the same brush please.
I feel very strongly about this because the press slate us to death about this. Its always "nurses" handwashing etc etc. Let me tell you at the end of a 14 hour shift when my hands are red raw from washing 10000 times and i havent even had a slurp of tea, i like to think ive done a good job for my patients.

Donbean Sun 15-May-05 11:09:32

ok, ive had x3 galaxy bars, 40000g of oil of evening primrose and feel.....calmer,
Its ok, its safe to come back into the thread now guys, ive shoved the soap box back under the sofa and im ready for less hysterical banter.
Im a tranquil serene garden of eden......

Flossam Sun 15-May-05 11:38:31

Donbean, I do usaully feel the same, my hands are always red raw too. I wash my hands obsessionally, to the extent that I wonder if I have a compulsion when I am at home. I have found though, that 7 months maternity leave softens the issue!

YoungButAble Sun 15-May-05 11:50:17

Shortly after having my son I was admitted to hospital with an infection. They brought in a fan to reduce my temerature and I swear, I have never seen anything so filthy...other peoples dead skin ang germs blowing all over me!!!! I dont think its the nurses who are to blame but the simple things like everday equipment. When busy its easy to over look, maybe more help is needed? I was worried for my newborn's health each time he visited!

Donbean Sun 15-May-05 12:00:09

indeed, mat leave did wonders for my hands too, HUGE bags under the old eyes though!!!

Flossam Sun 15-May-05 16:27:27

Fans are notirous for spreading infection. But they are excellant for patient comfort and cooling. It's often a judgement call as to whether the risk outweighs the benefit IYSWIM.

jessicasmummy Sun 15-May-05 16:31:17

Was really impressed with Ipswich Hospital, they were cleaning the floors, toilets, rooms etc approx 3-4 times a day and more if needed!

I did think i was becoming addicted to the alcohol gel stuf tho - it was like a little ritual at certain times of the day!

happymerryberries Sun 15-May-05 16:34:32

My cousin is a nurse who is just about to come up to retirement.

When she was in training one of her jobs was to wash the walls of the wards with Gluteraldehyde! This is related to formaldehyde the stuff that they use to pickle dead bodies. Trust me nothing would have grown on those walls! I realise they can't use that stuff now....It is carcinogenic, but in the 'good old days' (god I sound like my mother) things were kept clean.

She was a trainee nurse and she saw it as part of her job to make sure that infection was kept to a minimum.

Going further back my aunt (now in her 80s) has 14 operations on her leg when she was a child. She was in hospital for over two years, and never had one infection after all that surgery! She only kept her leg because of the amazing standards of clenliness in the hospital. We have all got complacent.

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