NHS hand hygiene complaints soar during pandemic

25th of February 2022
NHS hand hygiene complaints soar during pandemic

Hundreds of patients took issue with their GPs' and dentists' hygiene standards during the first year of the pandemic.

Patients' complaints about hygiene and equipment rose by nearly 50 per cent in the year 2020-2021, with more than two-thirds of these gripes relating to lax hand washing protocols.

A total of 361 formal complaints about hygiene in GP and dentistry services were lodged in England between April 1 2020 and March 31 2021. This figure was up from 242 during the same period in 2018-19, representing a 49 per cent rise.

According to the figures - issued by NHS Digital and reported by NationWorld -nearly 250 of the 361 complaints received last year were about hand hygiene. This figure was 30 per cent above the number of hand hygiene complaints logged in 2018-2019 and related to doctor and dental surgeries only, with hospital and community health service issues omitted from the figures.

Most of the other hygiene complaints received last year concerned the use of unsterilised equipment and instruments along with similar issues. Other non-hygiene-related complaints to the NHS included problems with appointment availability, clinical treatment issues and delays in diagnosis.

No data was collected in 2019-20 to reduce the burden on providers during the Covid-19 pandemic.


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