A hospital in Kent has been ordered to ‘make significant improvements’ after staff failed to follow Covid-19 regulations.
Inspectors found that some staff at the William Harvey Hospital, run by East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust, were failing to wash their hands properly after caring for suspected virus patients.
Others seen to wear PPE incorrectly on the Covid-19 ward. Following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) on August 11, the watchdog ordered “urgent enforcement action” by requiring that the emergency department was risk-assessed for social distancing and coronavirus risks.
The CQC also found that staff did not always use alcohol hand gel on entering and leaving wards, and at least seven members of staff were seen entering and leaving a ward caring for patients with suspected Covid-19 without washing their hands properly.
The emergency department staff also did not always have access to hand gel or hand washing facilities, with hand sanitiser dispensers remaining empty at both entrances even after the inspectors had raised the issue.
And inspectors found there was an inconsistent approach to triaging patients with Covid-19 symptoms in the emergency department.
Staff did not always wear PPE correctly in the emergency department, including failing to remove it between clinical areas and patient bays, and they did not always use the correct PPE, the inspectors said.
They also highlighted that cleaning schedules were not kept up to date, meaning they were unsure that the wards had been cleaned properly.
The inspectors said that not all rooms had signs to indicate how many people were permitted to be in that area while being able to socially distance, although managers told inspectors that every room should