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Information and guidance for public, NHSGGC staff, and community-based services.  Hospital visiting restrictions now in place.

Treatment Questions

Please click on each question or statement to view the response.

Yes. NHSGGC have an infection prevention and control team, who provide strategic coordination and direction to ensure...

Yes. NHSGGC have an infection prevention and control team, who provide strategic coordination and direction to ensure our programme of work reflects the National Infection prevention and control standards and requirements. We also have local infection prevention and control teams assigned to each sector of the Health Board, to provide local support, guidance, advice and action. For more information, please visit:

https://www.nhsggc.org.uk/your-health/infection-prevention-and-control/

The current incident with Ward 6A is being investigated by an Incident Management Team (IMT), which, as described earlier, is a team of experts, including infection prevention and control nurses and doctors, clinical staff, estates and facilities teams and Health Protection Scotland, who are national experts in this field. One of the responsibilities of an IMT is to confirm that all infection prevention and control measures are being applied effectively and are sufficient. This has been closely scrutinised, and the IMT continues to meet regularly.

In light of the current situation with infections, it was recommended by the IMT that prophylaxis (preventative treat...

In light of the current situation with infections, it was recommended by the IMT that prophylaxis (preventative treatment) against infections was considered. There are many scenarios when children and adults are given prophylactic treatment.

If any individual patients or parents have concerns about medications, we would encourage them to speak to the Consultant in charge of their care in the first instance.

Outbreak monitoring is the ongoing assessment of results of tests or changes we make to stop new infections from happ...

Outbreak monitoring is the ongoing assessment of results of tests or changes we make to stop new infections from happening.
As described earlier (see response to Question 31), the current incident is being investigated by an IMT. HPS representatives are members of the IMT, and attend all IMT meetings. In addition they provide expert advice and support. NHSGGC has published information on its website on this national process:

www.nhsggc.org.uk/your-health/infection-prevention-and-control

This sets out that the responsibilities of an IMT are to:

  • Develop theories and suggestions for testing as to which cross-transmission pathways and clinical procedures may be involved in causing the infections, to try and find the cause.
  • Determine whether there are any additional cases that need to be considered, and what control measures (i.e. actions to help control the likelihood of risk) may be necessary.
  • Confirm that all incident control measures are being applied effectively and are sufficient.

We have no evidence to say that the smell being referred to is likely to be a safety risk. At the planning stages of ...

We have no evidence to say that the smell being referred to is likely to be a safety risk. At the planning stages of the new QEUH and RHC hospitals, which are on the same site as a previous hospital, an environmental impact assessment was carried out. This included a review of the air quality and considered whether there would be any detriment associated with being located next to a sewage plant. No clinical or microbiological issue was identified.

The Independent Review team have also looked into this issue as part of their independent review of the hospitals. They have stated:

Following the inquiry’s formal Call for Evidence in June, members of the public asked for the facility to be taken into consideration by the investigation team. The site is a concern for members of the public because of the quite potent smell which is noticeable at the QEUH.

A number of hospitals have been sited close to major wastewater treatment sites across Scotland over the years. This includes the former Southern General Hospital on which the QEUH now sits. The Shieldhall wastewater treatment site dates back to 1901.

Dr Montgomery said: “Clearly there are concerns relating to its proximity to the QEUH. If we are to fully address public confidence issues we would be remiss not to explore any health links associated with the site as part of our review. Smell alone will not cause an infection risk but we felt that we should look into this and any associated issues. To date, nothing of concern has been uncovered.”

Some medication is used to reduce the risk of developing certain types of infection. In light of the current situatio...

Some medication is used to reduce the risk of developing certain types of infection. In light of the current situation with infections, and as described in response to Question 32, it was recommended by the IMT that medication to reduce the risk of infection be considered. We are sorry that questions about the use of such medicines, including how long this was recommended for, were not adequately addressed for some families.

This is something that continues to be monitored. If any patient or family member has any questions or concerns about any aspect of clinical care/use of medicines, suggestions to improve the current approaches to the provision of information, or unanswered questions about this, these should be directed to the Consultant in charge of the care being provided. The IMT continues to review the position.

We expect all families to be informed and fully involved in discussions regarding all medication and any treatment ch...

We expect all families to be informed and fully involved in discussions regarding all medication and any treatment changes. The named Consultant is responsible for ensuring ongoing discussion with the parents about the care of their child, and we are committed to reviewing the concerns of any family where they felt they were not involved in discussions or decisions about their child’s care. As described in previous responses, the use of medication to reduce the risk of infection is not unusual, and not all infections are preventable, but as with any medication, it should be clear why it is being prescribed.

We welcome the opportunity to look into this for any parent who has concerns about how this essential element of care planning has been delivered.

Please see our response to Questions 32 and 35.

Please see our response to Questions 32 and 35.

Yes. Clinicians are active participants in the IMT, along with colleagues from Health Protection Scotland, where the ...

Yes. Clinicians are active participants in the IMT, along with colleagues from Health Protection Scotland, where the data is presented and assessed.

Because not all clinicians can attend all meetings, as they are in clinics or looking after patients, those who attend feed back to those not present. The Chief Nurse and General Manager provide verbal updates to the clinical teams following IMT meetings. Any actions or matters arising are passed over to each new shift via ward safety briefs (which are verbal meetings). Special meetings with all clinicians were organised to ensure all had a chance to discuss progress.

As described above, the water quality has been assessed and is clean and safe. There has been extensive work and acti...

As described above, the water quality has been assessed and is clean and safe. There has been extensive work and action undertaken to fix the issues identified with the water; the water has been through a general filtration process, water treatment and a point of use filter at the sink. As noted in response to precious questions, the water has been deemed as ‘wholesome’ by an independent expert. It is therefore not the case that staff are washing their hands in contaminated water.

There are occasions when families would be informed that their child has not got an infection and would then receive ...

There are occasions when families would be informed that their child has not got an infection and would then receive treatment. This could be if information became available to suggest the presence of an infection at a later stage, or if a decision was made to commence medication to reduce the risk of infection developing. As referenced earlier, the IMT also recommended that prophylaxis against infections was considered (see Question 32).

Any parents who have unresolved concerns about treatment, the reasons for this and how this relates to information they have been given should raise this with the Consultant responsible for the provision of care.

We will support any family who wishes to discuss access to relevant medical records and, in cases where there are que...

We will support any family who wishes to discuss access to relevant medical records and, in cases where there are questions about diagnosis, take all necessary steps to discuss and respond to any questions about this. This should be raised with the Consultant in charge of care in the first instance.

There are currently a number of internal and external reviews of the QEUH and RHC ongoing. As well as our own interna...

There are currently a number of internal and external reviews of the QEUH and RHC ongoing. As well as our own internal reviews, there is the Independent Review commissioned by the Cabinet Secretary of Health and Sport (more details of which can be found at: www.queenelizabethhospitalreview.scot), an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive and the recently announced Public Inquiry. We are fully contributing to all of these reviews.

All patients are individual, and going through different illnesses and treatment. For this reason, this question need...

All patients are individual, and going through different illnesses and treatment. For this reason, this question needs to be answered on a case by case basis with the relevant Consultant in charge. We are happy to help facilitate this for any parent with concerns about delays in treatment (or any other issue regarding the care provided).

Sometimes soft toys are not allowed on the ward as they can be more difficult to keep clean. The play service provide...

Sometimes soft toys are not allowed on the ward as they can be more difficult to keep clean. The play service provides toys for children and staff are committed to ensuring that the provision of appropriate toys is supported and that conversations take place in a way that addresses any concerns regarding infection, while taking account of the importance of this as a part of an individual child’s plan of care.

There are no concerns for Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) patients within NHSGGC. The BMT patients are currently in a de...

There are no concerns for Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) patients within NHSGGC. The BMT patients are currently in a dedicated BMT unit, and have not been part of this incident. They continue to receive their care at the RHC, QEUH and Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre.

It is not necessary for patients to visit other wards to use the toilets. We would welcome further detail on any situ...

It is not necessary for patients to visit other wards to use the toilets. We would welcome further detail on any situation if this has been advised, so that we can ensure that this is reviewed, and action taken to make sure that accurate information is being provided.

Yes. We are committed to doing everything possible to ensuring that these issues are considered as part of care plann...

Yes. We are committed to doing everything possible to ensuring that these issues are considered as part of care planning and co-ordination. Clinical psychologists are available to any families who has concerns about the impact of the care environment on the psychological health and wellbeing of children and their families.

There are no restrictions on patients getting chemotherapy overnight. Concerns about this issue should be discussed w...

There are no restrictions on patients getting chemotherapy overnight. Concerns about this issue should be discussed with the Consultant in charge of care.

For patients who are no longer staying in the ward, from Monday to Friday day time hours, parents should call the day...

For patients who are no longer staying in the ward, from Monday to Friday day time hours, parents should call the day care unit and patients would be brought there. Out of hours access would be via the Emergency Department, or parents can call NHS24 for advice.

Parents can also call the ward their child was in for advice at any time, who in turn can let the Emergency Department know they are going to attend, if that is what the advice is.

High risk patients are assessed on a case by case basis. Those who are clinically assessed by the haemato-oncology co...

High risk patients are assessed on a case by case basis. Those who are clinically assessed by the haemato-oncology consultants and infection prevention and control doctors, may be admitted to either Ward 4B in the RHC, or another centre. Other patients are safe to be cared for in Ward 6A, outpatients and day care at the RHC.

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Last Updated: 13 February 2020