UNISON calls for hospitals to employ more cleaners to ensure infection control is correct


UNISON has today called for more cleaners to be employed in hospitals, as a survey by Nursing Times revealed that nurses and other hospital workers regularly have to step in and clean wards.

According to the survey more than half of NHS nurses believed cleaning services for their ward were inadequate, while around a fifth said their hospital trust had made cuts to cleaning services in the last year.

UNISON head of Nursing Gail Adams said: “Hospital cleaners work incredibly hard day in, day out, to keep our hospitals clean and safe. But the basic fact is that in some wards, there are not enough of them to provide a decent level of service.

“Hospital cleaning has never recovered from being sold off to the lowest bidder under the last Tory government. This process saw the service pared to the bone, as the number of hospital acquired infections rose. Much has been done to repair the damage, but there is still room for improvement.

“Best practice – dedicated cleaners on every ward and in every department, day and night – should be common practice across the country. Cleaners are fundamental to infection control – boosting their numbers would help to save the NHS millions by cutting the number of hospital acquired infections.”


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