Ipswich Hospital meets deep clean target

IPSWICH Hospital was celebrating today after meeting a government target to clean all wards under an initiative to prevent infection.The deep clean programme began in the summer and was completed in February, well ahead of today's deadline, which several other hospitals in the country failed to meet.

Naomi Cassidy

IPSWICH Hospital was celebrating today after meeting a government target to clean all wards under an initiative to prevent infection.

The deep clean programme began in the summer and was completed in February, well ahead of today's deadline, which several other hospitals in the country failed to meet.

Ipswich Hospital spokeswoman Jan Rowsell said: “We finished cleaning the last ward in February. We were well ahead of time.

“The last ward was the Somersham ward, which is for cancer services, so we had to be very careful.

“We are absolutely delighted it has been completed. It has taken lots of hard work and has been a great team effort.”

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The 20-ward deep clean programme began in July and was designed to prevent the spread of infections like MRSA.

MRSA is a common bug which is immune to many antibiotics and tends to hit the sick or injured.

Last year, Prime Minister Gordon Brown ordered all NHS hospitals to conduct a "deep clean" to tackle the spread of infections.

He said: “A ward at a time, walls, ceilings, fittings and ventilation shafts will be disinfected and scrubbed clean.”

However The Conservatives criticised the programme after it was revealed that only 93per cent of trusts were expected to have completed the process by the end of today, meaning they narrowly miss the target.

The rest have all started the clean and will finish soon, ministers claim.

A total of £60m has been spent on the cleaning project and has been hailed as a success by health minister Ben Bradshaw.

Andrew Large, director general of the Cleaning and Support Services Association, said the programme was in danger of becoming an “expensive publicity stunt” and added that unless long-term funding is secured, there is a good chance the situation will “slip back” to how it was before it started.

Do you think the hospital is much cleaner? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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