Debate and Open Discussion on Healthcare Acquired Infection

NHS Estates/ IHEEM Conference, Harrogate

Debate presented by Architects for Health – NHS Estates Conference, Harrogate, 12 November 2002

The following is a brief synopsis of an Open Discussion on Healthcare Acquired Infection held at the NHS Estates Conference in Harrogate on 12th November 2002.

This open discussion, chaired by Paul Mercer of AfH and Tangram Architects and Designers, attracted some 30 assorted delegates. Susan Wainwright of Tangram gave an introduction to her work at the Epsom General Hospitalunit – South West London Elective Orthopaedic Centre (SWELOC). Research in the USA at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York – careful theatre design with an inner sanctumn of cleanliness around the table, additional theatre suits for surgeons and others.

Doug Wantling also talked about simple initiatives at Whipps Cross Hospital to ensure that staff knew who was responsible for cleaning and looking after every single eitem in a ward. Carlisle Ryton injected an animated discourse around the inappropriateness of current CIBSE and other M + E design guidance, believing it to be hopelessly inadequate and recommending much higher ventilation rates. General thoughts about the mixed effectivelyess of laminar flows as a means of keeping the patient sterile on the table.

Contributions from the floor included an anecdote from an engineer working in the Middle East where surgery is carried out virtually in the open air and where post op infection rates are pretty near to zero.

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