The report which was published on 8 August made nine recommendations. NHS Highland has submitted an action plan to address the recommendations.
One of the key improvements is that a new cleaning regime has been introduced. This uses a chlorine based disinfectant which is much more effective at controlling the infection. To support this new approach the number of hours allocated to cleaning has been increased. Other actions include:
• Regular Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI) walkabouts to look at general issues
• Additional walkabouts by the Chief Executive and Non Executive Board Members
• Quality Improvement Team working with nursing and domestic staff to establish and embed Standard Operating procedures
• Additional cleaning equipment purchased
Development of Exemplar ward where staff in high risk areas will receive advanced training
• Advice and support from Health Protection Scotland
Members also heard today that a more sensitive test for the detection of Clostridium difficile was introduced in May at Raigmore, as well as other hospital sites across Highland, with the aim of improving detection rates.
As expected this has allowed an increased number of patients who have Clostridium difficile to be detected. Early detection is crucial as it allows the most appropriate actions to be taken in order to assess and treat patients, and in doing so prevent the spread of infection. Over time this should lead to a reduction in Clostridium difficile
Garry Coutts, Chair of NHS Highland, said: “As a Board we were very disappointed that our infection control standards dropped at Raigmore. Some of the findings were unacceptable.
“Our focus is now on making sure we improve. A lot of work has already taken place but we have more to do. It is also vital that any changes and improvements we do make can be maintained. We are looking at the best ways to do this and we will continue to report fully to the public on our progress.
“NHS Highland aspires to have the highest standards across our area and work will continue on improving and maintaining those standards.”