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Hospitals: Cleaning Services

Volume 471: debated on Thursday 31 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the cleanliness of hospitals contracted to South Staffordshire Primary Care Trust. (179769)

The national health service is assessed by the Healthcare Commission against core and developmental standards within Standards for Better Health. In respect of cleanliness, South Staffordshire primary care trust rated itself as compliant against core standard 21, which states:

“Healthcare services are provided in environments which promote effective care and optimise health outcomes by being well designed and well maintained with cleanliness levels in clinical and non-clinical areas that meet the national specifications for clean NHS premises.”

The Healthcare Commission also conducts the national patient surveys, which ask a variety of questions regarding cleanliness. The patient survey results are used as part of the evidence of compliance with the standards.

In addition, the National Patient Safety Agency conducts an annual patient environment action team (PEAT) inspection of all hospitals of 10 or more beds. This is a self-assessment, which includes cleanliness among other patient environment issues. The score generated is then banded into either: unacceptable, poor, acceptable, good or excellent. This report is available in full on the internet at

The following table identifies those hospitals that contract with South Staffordshire PCT, their assessment of compliance against core standard 21 and their PEAT score. Compliance with core standard 21 is taken at trust level and the PEAT score at individual site level.

Name of hospital

Core standard 21

PEAT environment rating

Samuel Johnson Community Hospital

Compliant as South Staffordshire PCT


Sir Robert Peel Hospital

Compliant as South Staffordshire PCT


Cannock Chase

Compliant as Mid Staffordshire General Hospitals


St. George’s Hospital

Compliant as South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare Foundation Trust


Queens Hospital Burton

Compliant as Burton Hospitals NHS Trust


Staffordshire General Hospital

Compliant as Mid Staffordshire General Hospitals


To ask the Secretary of State for Health what measurements will be used to assess the effectiveness of the deep cleaning of hospitals in England. (181809)

As set out in the written ministerial statement made by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State on 17 January 2008, Official Report, columns 38-39WS, following completion of the deep clean of the national health service on 31 March 2008, the Department will work with strategic health authorities (SHAs) to draw up examples of where a deep clean has had a demonstrable effect in improving patient care and experience and will share these across the NHS.

SHAs will take the lead on evaluation locally as the impact of each trust’s programme will be different and no single measurement method will pick up all the benefits, particularly as trusts may be implementing a range of measures to improve cleanliness and tackle healthcare associated infections.

Improvements to patient experience and environment may be measurable through:

Patient Environment Action Team scores;

scores on national specifications for cleanliness;

compliance with the Code of Practice for the Prevention and Control of Healthcare Associated Infections;

compliance with the Department’s national core standards;

Healthcare Commission in-patient survey scores; and

infection rates.