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Found 10 results
  1. News Article
    The Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB) have launched a national investigation into the provision of piped oxygen gas supplies to hospitals. During the COVID-19 pandemic there has been an increased demand for oxygen gas on hospital wards, with more patients needing oxygen therapy. Insufficient oxygen supply to seriously ill patients can have very severe consequences, including death. The investigation is examining a major incident that took place at an acute hospital. Demands on their oxygen supply led to patients being diverted to other hospitals. In addition, patients were also transferred between clinical environments. As part of HSIB's final investigation report, they will make safety recommendations to the appropriate national bodies in order to improve patient safety. Read full story Source: HSIB, 15 January 2021
  2. News Article
    A hospital's oxygen supply has "reached a critical situation" due to rising numbers of COVID-19 infections. A document shared with the BBC showed Southend Hospital has had to reduce the amount it uses to treat patients. It said the target range for oxygen levels that should be in patients' blood had been cut from 92% to a baseline of 88-92%. Hospital managing director, Yvonne Blucher, said it was "working to manage" the situation. "We are experiencing high demand for oxygen because of rising numbers of inpatients with Covid-19 and we are working to manage this," she said. Read full story Source: BBC News, 11 January 2021
  3. News Article
    Hospitals across England could see oxygen supplies at worse levels this winter than at the peak of the first coronavirus wave – when some sites were forced to close to new admissions. An alert to NHS hospitals this week warned that because of the rise in admissions of COVID-19 patients, there is a risk of oxygen shortages. Trusts have been ordered to carry out daily checks on the amount of oxygen in the air on wards to reduce the risk of catastrophic fires or explosions. The problem is not because of a lack of oxygen but because pipes delivering the gas to wards will not be able to deliver the volume of gas needed by all patients. This can trigger a cut-off in supply and a catastrophic drop in pressure, meaning patients would be denied the oxygen they need to breathe. Read full story Source: The Independent, 20 November 2020
  4. Content Article
    Key points Communication between members of the surgical team is an integral component of the prevention of surgical fires. Open delivery of 100% oxygen should be avoided if at all possible for surgery above the xiphoid process. Surgeons usually control the ignition sources, such as electrosurgical units and lasers. Operating theatre nurses or practitioners usually control the fuel sources, such as alcohol-based preparations and surgical drapes. The use of an ignition source in close proximity of an oxidiser-enriched environment creates a high risk for surgical fires.
  5. Content Article
    The authors found that fire occurs when the three elements of the fire triad, fuel, oxidiser and ignition, coincide. Surgical fires are unusual in the absence of an oxygen-enriched atmosphere. The ignition source is most commonly diathermy but lasers carry a relatively greater risk. The majority of fires occur during head and neck surgery. This is due to the presence of oxygen and the extensive use of lasers. The risk of fire can be reduced with an awareness of the risk and good communication. Surgery will always carry a risk of fire. Reducing this risk requires a concerted effort from all team members.
  6. News Article
    Demand for oxygen from COVID-19 patients recovering at home is set to place the NHS under strain, the health service has warned. NHS England has issued guidance to out-of-hospital health providers on the extra demands likely to be placed on them given the number of people recovering after a hospital stay with the coronavirus. It warns that the provision from its home oxygen services and community respiratory teams across the NHS is expected to be an issue as the scale of demand increases. Andrew Whittamore, a practising GP and clinical lead for the Asthma UK and British Lung Foundation partnership, said concerns about the potential for hospitals to be overwhelmed in the early part of the pandemic had led to community oxygen teams being primed to take on more patients – but he described that ramping up as “a short-term fix”. “We don’t know how long people are going to need oxygen or other services for,” he said. “There are definitely going to be extra patients added on to our community teams’ workloads.” The Taskforce for Lung Health – of which the British Lung Foundation is a member – has raised particular concerns about access to pulmonary rehabilitation. An education- and exercise-based treatment, which is proven to be more effective for lung patients than many drug-based treatments, and face-to-face classes have been suspended during the pandemic. It may be that such treatment would also be helpful for some patients recovering from COVID-19. Jackie Eagleton, policy officer at the British Lung Foundation, said there had been issues with access to pulmonary rehabilitation for a long time, but the need to offer this form of support to people with lung conditions “has never been more pressing than it is now”. Read full story Source: The Independent, 16 June 2020
  7. Content Article
    This alert relates to the risk of harm caused by the interruption of HFNO to babies, children and adults in acute respiratory failure without hypercapnia during patient transfer. Some HFNO delivery devices have a transport mode, but most require mains power and will not deliver oxygen during transfer unless attached to a compatible uninterruptible power supply (UPS) device. The alert asks providers to add clear labels to HFNO delivery devices to make staff aware that even brief interruptions to mains power supply could lead to respiratory and cardiac arrest; and that HFNO in any emergency department or short stay unit must not be started without a plan for how to transfer the patient onwards. Where a UPS is used, action must be taken on the storage and maintenance of UPS devices to ensure they are ready for use and staff know where to locate them.
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