Hospital sheds light on pest call-outs

ANTS in the eye clinic, flies in the maternity wards and cockroaches in the antenatal unit.These are just some of the issues that prompted Ipswich Hospital to call pest controllers 228 times within a 27-month period, it was revealed today.

ANTS in the eye clinic, flies in the maternity wards and cockroaches in the antenatal unit.

These are just some of the issues that prompted Ipswich Hospital to call pest controllers 228 times within a 27-month period, it was revealed today.

As reported in The Evening Star yesterday new figures showed that Ipswich Hospital was one of 89 NHS Trusts across England that had more than 50 visits from pest controllers between January 2006 and April this year.

As more specific details about the incidents emerged today, the hospital insisted that there were no infestations or major problems with pests on the site.


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The information given by the hospital in response to a Freedom of Information request by the Conservatives revealed that there were reports of ants in the dental unit, eye clinic, radiotherapy unit, chest clinic, rheumatology, and physiotherapy. There were also biting insects and cockroaches in the X-ray unit.

Cockroaches were found in the eye clinic, lymphoedema therapy centre, and antenatal unit. Flies were also found in the maternity wards.

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An Ipswich Hospital spokeswoman said: “The information we supplied [for the Freedom of Information request] is very transparent. “It is every incident we have had over the last two years. There have been 228 calls made to pest control but that doesn't mean we had that many visits from them. I can reassure our patients that we do not have a major problem.

“We vigorously manage pest control because it has a huge impact on cleanliness and a huge impact on patient safety.

“We want the hospital to be as clean as it can be and we have put a lot of money and resources into this because it is a huge priority.”

Ben Gummer, Conservative parliamentary candidate for Ipswich, said: “These figures are clearly very concerning, especially given that there were several infestations in areas where patients are being treated.

“I know hospital staff are working hard to keep Ipswich Hospital clean, but they simply cannot keep up when the hospital is shackled by government targets and some of the lowest funding in the whole of England. The government is running Ipswich Hospital down - this is yet more evidence of that.”

Have you seen any problems with pests at Ipswich Hospital? Conversely, do you have a special thank you you'd like to make to staff at the hospital for the care they provided you or your family? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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