Covid cases rise at Scottish hospital as cleaning blunders found

21 December 2020, 20:42 | Updated: 21 December 2020, 20:43

A review has been launched into the cause of a rise in Covid-19 cases at University Hospital Wishaw.
A review has been launched into the cause of a rise in Covid-19 cases at University Hospital Wishaw. Picture: Google Maps

By Joe Cook

Coronavirus cases are rising at a Lanarkshire hospital as lapses in cleaning have been identified.

Multiple wards at University Hospital Wishaw have been closed to new admissions due to the spread of the virus, NHS Lanarkshire said.

Heather Knox, the trust’s chief executive, said that, as part of their review into the cause of the rise in cases, they “identified that not all of the enhanced cleaning processes... were still being carried out to the fullest extent at the hospital”.

"This was immediately rectified and we are investigating the reasons for this issue jointly with the external service provider,” she added.

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Ms Knox continued: "We are working hard to do everything we can to minimise the level of infection at the hospital.

"To ensure we leave no stone unturned as we work to reduce disruption to patients and services, this will include a thorough review through our clinical review procedure.

"The review will take an in depth look at infection levels throughout the hospital and identify what more can be done to tackle this.”

The most recent figures show NHS Lanarkshire has 160 patients in its hospitals with a recently confirmed Covid-19 diagnosis.

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Hospitals across the UK are currently under significant pressure, with LBC revealing that all the critical care beds at Wales’ largest hospital were filled over the weekend.

Around 40 percent of the ICU patients at Cardiff and Vale were being treated for coronavirus.

Meanwhile, in London multiple NHS trusts have suspended non-urgent care due to Covid-19 pressures, as the new Covid variant fuels a surge in cases in the capital.

From Monday afternoon, the Royal Free London Trust have paused “all non-urgent, time critical planned procedures/operations and out-patient services”.

Apologising for the “difficult decision” the trust explained the move: “As more people require care for COVID-19, it’s essential for us to free up vital clinical staff to support areas of our hospitals that need it most during this challenging time.”

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Analysis by the PA news agency revealed a third of major hospital trusts in England currently have more Covid-19 patients than at the peak of the first wave of the virus.

In two regions - eastern England and south-west England - more than half of trusts are above their first-wave peak.

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Other trusts have seen their numbers rise so rapidly that they could pass their first-wave peak within days.

The total number of Covid-19 patients in all hospitals in England - including mental health and community trusts - currently stands at 16,183.

During the first wave this number peaked at 18,974 on April 12.