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Practitioners impress at regional event

2022-10-26T09:17:28+01:00Wednesday 26 October 2022|
  • Proud staff at the recent conference

New practitioners from two Black Country health organisations showcased their work at a regional event – with one achieving a top-two placing.

Members of Infection Prevention teams from Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust and The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust (RWT) presented at the West Midlands Infection Prevention (IP) Society’s Marion Reed programme. This is a development programme for new IP practitioners to showcase their work.

Trish Hiels, IP Practitioner from Walsall’s team, earned second place out of 23 and was highly commended for her presentation on improving indoor air quality and her project on quantitative measuring to determine indoor air quality in healthcare environments.

Amy Boden, Head of Infection Prevention and Control Team and Deputy Director, IPC, at Walsall Healthcare, sat on the judging panel. She said: “All submissions were really strong. The IP practitioners were fantastic and presented some great innovations.

“The judging panel have recommended for all who submitted to present their work at upcoming conferences and we will be approaching them next year to present via the West Midlands branch conference to showcase their great work.”

Trish, who has been with Walsall Healthcare since 2011 and with the IPC team since May 2022, compiled data from Acute Medical Unit (AMU) and Ward 16 at Walsall Manor Hospital from monitoring the air quality at different times from Monday to Friday during July and August this year.

Of 686 pieces of data she collected, just one carbon dioxide reading indicated poor air quality and the key conclusion was that mobile air purifiers called Rediair and natural ventilation need to be used together for good readings.

This came after Walsall’s IPC team recommended use of Rediair, which were installed during March and April of 2022 following a recommendation in spring 2021.

Among the other presentations from Wolverhampton and Walsall were:-

  • David Scotcher, Infection Prevention Practitioner, RWT, presented “The gloves are off” with resources he will be sharing with colleagues to engage in reducing glove use in practice
  • Katie Pratt, Infection Prevention Practitioner, RWT, presented on a new training package to staff with interactive cards as an alternative to Powerpoint

David’s project is supporting with the local implementation of a national campaign. When used correctly, medical gloves are a vital part of personal protective equipment (PPE), but there are many occasions when gloves aren’t needed and instead, hand hygiene is completely effective in protecting staff and patients.

Gloves are one of the most common single-use plastic items in healthcare. Between 25 February 2020 and 24 February 2021, 5.5 billion gloves were used in the NHS and social care in England alone. By reducing unnecessary glove use we can help make healthcare more sustainable.

Katie’s project is an innovative and interactive resource that can be used in the clinical area to support education instead of Powerpoint.

Her idea is red, amber and green cards denoting high risk, medium risk and low risk respectively. These are placed at the top of a table or chart and those receiving the training are given around 15 minutes to place the organisms in the risk category they think they fall into.

Katie said: “The feedback has been positive. Staff have said it was fun, interactive, engaging and interesting.”

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