THE Alexandra Hospital has been hit by another bug scare after bacteria was found in rinse water from endoscope contamination machines.
Endoscopes are a fibre optic tubes sheathed in a protective casing which allow doctors to look inside a patient without invasive surgery or with the bare minimum.
Last year the hospital was hit by two similar cases leading to ‘probable cross infection’ which resulted in 11 patients being infected.
In this latest incident Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust (WAHT) say no patients have been infected.
This latest case was reported in the Health Service Journal which highlighted an internal report made in March 2015 that found that the endoscopy unit’s machines for decontaminating endoscopes had “been in situ for over eight years and are overdue for replacement”.
The HSJ added that: “The layout of the unit was described as ‘outdated’, ‘unsafe’ and ‘unacceptable’.”
Back in October 2015 the trust told the HSJ three new decontamination units would be ‘complete imminently’ but these have still not been installed.
Neal Stote, chairman of the Save the Alex campaign said: “This is very disappointing. The trust has failed again. They were shamed last year by this and they have let it happen again.”
A spokesperson for WAHT said: “A business case for the procurement and replacement of decontamination machines as part of the wider refurbishment of the endoscopy unit at the Alexandra Hospital is under development.
“Unfortunately this process has taken longer than we envisaged. But in the meantime, there is absolutely no risk to patient safety.”