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Hospitals: Infectious Diseases

Volume 490: debated on Monday 23 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment his Department has made of the effectiveness of personal antimicrobial products used (a) before entry to hospital for elective patients and (b) during hospital stays in combating health care-acquired infections; and if he will make a statement. (264890)

The Department has not undertaken any work on the efficacy of personal antimicrobial products before entry to hospital for elective patients or during stays in hospital and is not aware of any evidence that these products offer advantages over materials supplied to patients by the national health service.

Our strategy “Clean Safe Care' draws together the measures required to control infections. Generally, normal soap and toiletries are adequate for patients' personal hygiene during their hospital stay, and hospitals will provide special soap and shampoo to prevent bacterial infections as necessary. The decision to provide patients with antimicrobial soap and shampoo is based on local infection prevention and control policies.