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As they were coming to a Members’ Meeting to hear about Infection Prevention and Control it is hoped that the 50 or so in the audience had not walked past any available sanitisers without using them. Judging by one of the questions asked, and the murmurings of agreement, it would seem that the Trust’s members considered this a high priority action when entering and leaving a hospital building. They were appalled at seeing how many just walked past.

This was just one simple and important action mentioned by Ann Trail, Nurse Consultant & Deputy Director of Infection Prevention and Control in her interesting and informative presentation on 28th June. While Ann clearly carried out her duties with the same determination as the presenters of that Channel 4 programme, the title of which appears at the top, it was quickly very clear that there was far more to keeping a hospital clean and infection free!

There may be a small team of Microbiologists, Nurses and one Secretary having the designated responsibility in the Trust for this ‘subject’ but clearly everyone on the staff has this responsibility to ensure that they abide by simple instructions (some as simple as thorough and frequent hand washing) to minimise the risk and eradicate unavoidable infections, many of which are brought into the hospitals from outside. The responsibility also extends to visitors as indicated above.

Ann explained different types of infections and how and why they are caused, and gave some statistics. Some infections were unavoidable due to patients’ poor immunity mainly caused by their medical condition or age. Ann gave the good news concerning the reduction in such infections at Ashford & St Peter’s and mentioned the Care Quality Commission visit in 2015 when it was declared that the Trust met all standards and was marked as ‘Good’ in this area. And ‘Good’ was the verdict at the end of this interesting presentation following which there were many questions and comments.

Keith Bradley
Public Governor, Woking and Guildford

 

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