Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI)
HAI is a matter of great public concern which is why NHS Lanarkshire considers this to be a priority issue. We are determined to help keep our patients, visitors and staff well.
Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI) are infections which are not present at the time the patient’s healthcare begins, but which arise afterwards (Health Protection Scotland 2007). As part of our drive to tackle HAIs we continue to implement and monitor compliance with national initiatives and standards and are one of two mainland Boards in NHS Scotland who has met their national HAI targets for 2010/11.
Healthcare is delivered in a variety of settings for example in hospitals, care homes, doctors’ and dental surgeries, health centres and in the patient’s own home.
There are lots of reasons why someone can develop an HAI. Being ill or receiving treatment can often weaken the natural immune system. Most people won’t develop an HAI while they are being treated, but it is impossible to completely remove all the risk during healthcare. This is because every disease or condition, procedure and sometimes medication can reduce natural defences against infection.
As part of our drive to tackle HAIs we continue to implement and monitor compliance with national initiatives and standards and are one of two mainland Boards in NHS Scotland who has met their national HAI targets for 2010/11.
Wards and departments are subject to regular local and national monitoring to ensure they are meeting rigorous levels of cleanliness. An action plan is also in place promoting and monitoring continuous improvement in levels of hospital cleanliness and we have a senior director with overall responsibility for hospital hygiene and cleaning.
All newly appointed staff are required to undertake mandatory HAI training at induction which incorporates training on the use standard precautions when dealing with all patients at all times to limit the spread of infection. There is a Lanarkshire-wide Control of Infection Manual, which reflects best practice and audits are regularly performed to ensure staff are compliant.
Staff have introduced their own initiatives to help raise awareness of hand hygiene including the use of strategically placed flashing signs, displays and the introduction of “meet and greet” at visiting times to encourage staff and visitors to use alcohol hand based products. Wards display posters informing the public of the role they can play in combating healthcare associated infections and infection control advice for patients and visitors is available on this website.
Find out more about HAI in NHS Lanarkshire
The Infection Control Teams are situated in various sites across NHS Lanarkshire and can be contacted by phoning the appropriate hospital switchboard:
Tel: 01355 585 000
Fax: 01355 584 473
Tel: 01236 748 748
Fax: 01236 760 015
Wishaw General Hospital
50 Netherton Street
Tel: 01698 361 100
NHS Lanarkshire Headquarters
Tel: 01698 855500
Fax: 01698 858277