With uncertainty and, by the sound of it, a bit of a rumpus about who should fund about domestic clinical waste collections and thus who is responsible for pulling the plug on the service, patients are complaining bitterly as they are left in the lurch.
The decision to stop the contract, taken on the orders of London-based NHS England, shocked medical supervisors, local councils and MPs. NHS England has now promised to investigate , after some prompting from local reporters, but don’t hold your breath or expect a straightforward answer.
The mainly kidney dialysis patients were unaware of the decision until by-products of their therapy were not picked up in the New Year. The move has outraged doctors and patients often unable to dispose of the waste which is banned from domestic rubbish collection. And as so often is the case, patients receiving long-term care in their own home try so hard to comply with safety rules and regulatory requirements and have every right to be concerned, having been left out of the loop.
The service users pictured here, from a report in the Lancashire Telegraph, are obviously struggling with a garage full of yellow sacks. But what about others, who do not have space in a garage, no garage or other free space, perhaps living in an apartment or tower block? What idiot failed to plan before making this change?
MPs Graham Jones, Gordon Birtwistle and Jack Straw have written to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt demanding he sort out the mess, branded a health risk by Lancashire Telegraph doctor Tom Smith. Let’s hope someone pulls out the Ministerial finger very soon indeed.
- Have you been affected by funding changes such as this?
- Are you told to put waste that was previous collected as clinical waste into a black sack for disposal?
- Are you a Local Authority or other collection service provider/contractor feeling this cut in funding?
- What are you doing with sharps waste?
Please do let us know, so that we can help keep everyone concerned properly informed and add pressure to the push to speedy and satisfactory resolution.