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Patient care hit by disrepair in NHS buildings

Health / Wed 21st Feb 2024 at 06:57am

DISREPAIR in NHS buildings led to thousands of potentially-harmful incidents last year including critically-ill patients being moved when rainfall came through the ceiling.

Sewage leaks, floods and failing equipment also featured in incident records obtained by the BBC under the Freedom of Information Act.

Health chiefs called on the government to nearly double its capital spending.

The government said “significant sums” had been invested to modernise the NHS.

According to NHS data, the care of more than 2,600 acute hospital patients was disrupted last year by estates and infrastructure failure.

The BBC asked 210 hospital trusts for examples, and a total of 86 trusts provided a response.

Incidents included:

  • Patients awaiting dialysis were sent home because of water supply issues
  • Green algae growth in a hydrotherapy pool
  • Power lost in an operating theatre
  • Sewage leaked into a waiting area for ophthalmology
  • Parts of a ceiling collapsed in a clinical area
  • An operating theatre reached 29C because of a broken air conditioning unit

The NHS Confederation, which represents trusts, has published a report setting out what health care leaders want the next government to prioritise. 

It has called on the government to increase capital spending on the health service from £7.7bn to £14.1bn. 

Matthew Taylor, its chief executive, said: “Put simply, a lack of capital funding can leave patients at risk.”

Official data shows the total repairs backlog for the NHS was £11.6bn, a rise of 13.6% on the previous year.

Disrepair in NHS buildings led to thousands of potentially-harmful incidents last year including critically-ill patients being moved when rainfall came through the ceiling.

Sewage leaks, floods and failing equipment also featured in incident records obtained by the BBC under the Freedom of Information Act.

Health chiefs called on the government to nearly double its capital spending.

The government said “significant sums” had been invested to modernise the NHS.

According to NHS data, the care of more than 2,600 acute hospital patients was disrupted last year by estates and infrastructure failure.

The BBC asked 210 hospital trusts for examples, and a total of 86 trusts provided a response.

Incidents included:

  • Patients awaiting dialysis were sent home because of water supply issues
  • Green algae growth in a hydrotherapy pool
  • Power lost in an operating theatre
  • Sewage leaked into a waiting area for ophthalmology
  • Parts of a ceiling collapsed in a clinical area
  • An operating theatre reached 29C because of a broken air conditioning unit

The NHS Confederation, which represents trusts, has published a report setting out what health care leaders want the next government to prioritise. 

It has called on the government to increase capital spending on the health service from £7.7bn to £14.1bn. 

Matthew Taylor, its chief executive, said: “Put simply, a lack of capital funding can leave patients at risk.”

Official data shows the total repairs backlog for the NHS was £11.6bn, a rise of 13.6% on the previous year.

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6 Comments for Patient care hit by disrepair in NHS buildings:

Pat Roberts
2024-02-21 07:51:36

Harlow hospital was named as “worst” in the U.K. in a report on this a couple of weeks back in The Observer newspaper. Including sewage leaks. And still no sign of a new hospital. Follow up neede Your Harlow!

David Forman
2024-02-21 15:41:59

NHS Digital official data for the year ending 31 March 2023 shows the annual cost of running the NHS Estate at £12.4billion. The total backlog of NHS Estate maintenance is just slightly lower at £11.6billion. To highlight this is an ever growing problem, back in 2017/18 the NHS maintenance backlog was £6.0billion. See latest official figures at: https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/publications/statistical/estates-returns-information-collection/england-2022-23

David Vincent
2024-02-21 15:45:01

Almost doubling the NHS Estate repairs backlog in 5 years is a damning indictment of our useless Conservative Government.

Si
2024-02-21 17:33:56

Exactly the point, they waste money like no one’s business at that hospital the amount they throw out. Everything falling to bits in that hospital oh but they could afford to pay out thousands of pounds fly out to America for a conference. It’s a joke, they need to sack all senior management at the hospital and Maybe if the NHS treated their employees better there wouldn’t be a staff shortage all the time. We have no hope, the NHS is finished!

Bruce Downey
2024-02-21 18:22:49

Is Dave, Jekyll and Hyde? 🤔

Eddie
2024-02-21 19:16:44

I would image £54000 could have paid for some repairs. Need I say more

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