CQC cites care home clinical waste failure

Workers at a Clevedon care home left ‘clinical waste’ outside residents’ rooms, according to its latest Care Quality Commission (CQC) report. What are the issues?

We were not present at the inspection, so our thoughts can be, at best speculative.

If bags of waste were left outside rooms, what might be the risk? Biologically, there is possibly no greater risk that leaving a waste sack in its sack holder inside the patients’ rooms, or on a hospital ward. As long as the contents don’t leak, all should be well. However, it would be a much greater concern in the corridor floor was carpeted since any leak would be hard to sanitise effectively. Strike one!

Notwithstanding, these ‘errors’ in clinical waste management, as we have discussed many times previously, are useful markers for generally poor hygiene, waste management and housekeeping issues and often included in CQC reports as something of an ‘extra’.

But the corridors leading from patient rooms must surely be a protected space and exit route in the event of fire, and one that must be kept clear at all times, especially of flimsy and flammable waste sacks. Strike two!

Additionally, if sacks were left on the floor, there is a slip and trip hazard for all, an in the case of an elderly or inform resident that could be disastrous. Strike three!



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