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Found 18 results
  1. Content Article
    Hazardous Hospitals: Cultures of Safety in NHS General Hospitals, c.1960-Present is a three-year research project at the University of Warwick, funded by the Wellcome Trust. It is being conducted by Dr Christopher Sirrs. The publication of the Francis Report into healthcare failures at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust in 2013 dramatically refocused public and political attention on issues of ‘safety’ in the National Health Service. ‘Safety’ has increasingly occupied the attention of policy makers in recent decades, with hospital managers establishing various systems and processes to protect patients and staff from harm. These include learning and reporting systems, policies about patient consultation, and campaigns for preventing harms such as falls and healthcare-associated infections. However, little is understood about how and why these ideas and practices around ‘safety’ in the NHS evolved. This three-year project explores the history of safety in the NHS, highlighting how hospitals have promoted ‘safety cultures’: ideas, values and behaviours which support safety. Drawing upon a rich seam of archival material, as well as a distinctive methodology, it makes timely contribution to historical understandings of the NHS. The project asks the following key questions: 1. What defines the ‘safety culture’ of NHS hospitals? How can these ‘safety cultures’ vary? 2. How was safety in hospitals assessed, and in what ways did it come to the attention of NHS managers and policymakers after 1960? 3. How did NHS managers promote safety among their staff? 4. What role did groups such as patient organisations, safety campaigners and the press play in depicting, challenging and promoting reform of hospital ‘safety cultures’? The project will directly engage individuals and organisations involved in promoting or campaigning for safety in the NHS. Interviews will also be conducted with a wide range of individuals. If you are interested in participating in the project, please see the ‘Participate‘ page for more information. You can follow the project via @hazardhospitals or, for more information follow the link below.
  2. News Article
    Frontline NHS staff are at risk of dying from Covid-19 after the protective gear requirements for health workers treating those infected were downgraded last week, doctors and nurses have warned. Hospital staff caring for the growing number of those seriously ill with the disease also fear that they could pass the infection on to other patients after catching it at work because of poor protection. Doctors who are dealing most closely with Covid-19 patients – A&E medics, anaesthetists and specialists in acute medicine and intensive care – are most worried. A doctor in an infectious diseases ward of a major UK hospital, who is treating patients with Covid-19, said: “I am terrified. I am seriously considering whether I can keep working as a doctor.” Read full story Source: The Guardian, 16 March 2020
  3. News Article
    Two out of five GPs have still not received any personal protective equipment (PPE) against coronavirus, a Pulse survey suggests. The poll of over 400 GPs saw 41% of respondents say they have not received any PPE, while a further 32% said they had not received enough. Just 15% of GPs said they have sufficient PPE, with the remainder unsure. This comes despite NHS England promising last week that it would ship PPE free of charge to practices. The Welsh Government made the same announcement this week, while in Scotland health boards should be distributing PPE. A GP who has received no proper equipment, Dr Kate Digby, in Cirencester, said she feels "woefully underprepared". She told Pulse: "I'm becoming increasingly concerned at the lack of resources being provided for frontline primary care". Read full story Source: Pulse, 2 March 2020
  4. News Article
    A baby with a serious heart condition has died after she received an infection from mould in a Seattle hospital's operating room, her mother says. Elizabeth Hutt was born with a heart condition that she battled for the entirety of her six-month-long life. The young child underwent three open heart surgeries, and after the third one is when it's believed she contracted an Aspergillus mould infection in the hospital's operating room. The mould in the hospital's operating rooms was first detected in November, around the same time as the child's third surgery. It was later determined the infection was contracted from the mould discovered in three of the 14 operating rooms at the hospital in November. The mould came from the hospital's air-handling units in the operating rooms, and 14 patients have developed infections from the mould since 2001, the hospital revealed. Seven of those 14 children have since died from their infections. Elizabeth's parents have joined a class action suit against Seattle Children's Hospital in January, which alleges facility managers knew about the mould since 2005 and failed to fix the problem. Read full story Source: The Independent, 14 February 2020
  5. Content Article
    Reminder: Advise patients not to: smoke; use naked flames (or be near people who are smoking or using naked flames); or go near anything that may cause a fire while emollients are in contact with their medical dressings or clothing. Change patient clothing and bedding regularly—preferably daily—because emollients soak into fabric and can become a fire hazard. Incidents should be reported.
  6. Content Article
    Resources: driver diagrams (tree diagrams) the health and wellbeing framework and diagnostic tool workforce stress and the supportive organisation — a framework for improvement.
  7. News Article
    A woman has died after being set on fire during surgery in Romania, the country’s health ministry has said, in a case that has cast a spotlight on the ailing Romanian health system. The patient, who had pancreatic cancer, died on Sunday after suffering burns to 40% of her body when surgeons used an electric scalpel despite her being treated with an alcohol-based disinfectant. Contact with the flammable disinfectant caused combustion and the patient “ignited like a torch”, Emanuel Ungureanu, a Romanian politician, said. A nurse threw a bucket of water on the 66-year-old woman to prevent the fire from spreading. The health ministry said it would investigate the “unfortunate incident”, which took place on 22 December. “The surgeons should have been aware that it is prohibited to use an alcohol-based disinfectant during surgical procedures performed with an electric scalpel,” the Deputy Minister, Horatiu Moldovan, said. Read full story Source: The Guardian, 30 December 2019 the hub has a number of posts on preventing surgical fires: Surgical fires: nightmarish “never events” persist MHRA. Paraffin-based skin emollients on dressings or clothing: fire risk (18 April 2016) National Patient Safety Agency: Fire hazard with paraffin-based skin products (Nov 2007) How I raised awareness of fires in the operating theatre
  8. Content Article
    Here is the FRAS tool I implemented: Fire risk assessment tool.pdf Other useful resources I found: Scoring_Fire_Risk-2.pdf Surgical Site Fire Triangle.pdf Surgical_Fire_Poster (1).pdf Video: Fire hazard demo by Zaamin Hussain and Mike Reed Demonstration: "Burning Bruce" drives home the reality of surgical fires - article in Outpatient Surgery
  9. Content Article
    For fires to occur, heat, fuel and oxygen must be present. Oxygen was a factor in half of the surgical fire cases reviewed, usually when the concentration of oxygen being delivered for ventilation wasn’t reduced sufficiently during electro- or laser surgery on the head, neck or upper chest. Most of the burns that weren’t caused by fire involved heat from equipment. These cases included surgeons using the wrong device or settings, as well as issues with the maintenance, malfunction or positioning of devices. Cases involving fuel were usually caused by the unsafe use of alcohol-based antiseptics, including allowing it to pool under patients, using the wrong concentration, or failing to let it dry before placing drapes. To reduce the risk of fires and burns, CMPA recommends that surgical teams “identify, separate and manage the elements of the fire triangle” before procedures. This involves ensuring that “ignition sources should not come into contact with fuels, and oxygen should be reduced to the minimum required concentration.” The association also recommends that surgical teams ensure that antiseptic has time to dry and doesn’t pool, follow device instructions, and run simulations to practice responding to fires.
  10. Content Article
    This document is accompanied by: general advice and advice for hospital inpatients supporting information for healthcare staff including background and findings posters in English and Welsh Health and Safety Laboratory report FS/06/12 ‘Fire hazards associated with contamination of dressings and clothing by paraffin based ointments’ examples of products containing paraffin warning / hazard stickers for products a patient safety video leaflets in English and Welsh. Although the deadline for actions has passed, this guidance remains best practice. It should be followed to prevent future patient safety incidents.
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