​COVID clusters at hospitals had a ‘catastrophic impact’: Trust

Daisy Hill HospitalDaisy Hill Hospital
Daisy Hill Hospital
​CLUSTERS of COVID-19 at Craigavon and Daisy Hill hospitals during which 15 people died had a “catastrophic impact”, a report has said.

​The statement was made following the publication of a report into the clusters, which occurred in 2020, by the Southern Trust.

An independent panel was appointed to conduct a Level 3 Serious Adverse Incident (SAI) review into the clusters.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

This work was completed in 2022 and the report shared with the service users and families affected by these outbreaks at that time.

The service users and families were then given time to review this report and were supported by a family liaison officer throughout the process.

The Trust presented the SAI report at last Thursday's Trust Board meeting and the report published on the Southern Trust website

A Southern Trust spokesperson said the report contains important findings and recommendations regarding the prevention, control, and treatment of COVID-19 as well as communication and other areas.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“We will continue to carefully consider the report and its recommendations and involve the families in this process,” added the spokesperson.

“We are committed to learning and improving to help reduce the likelihood of COVID-19 outbreaks in our hospitals and minimise the impact of outbreaks if they occur.”

The spokesperson continued: “The review referred to the catastrophic impact of these outbreaks and we fully recognise the enormous distress experienced by the families and hospital staff affected.

"During the three outbreaks, 15 of the 32 affected patients sadly died.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“The panel concluded that infection control protocols in both hospitals were broadly in line with recommendations and practice at the time and that the nursing and medical care provided to manage patients with COVID-19 was also satisfactory.

“The report identified important learning from these incidents regarding the management of COVID-19 clusters and ways in which systems could be strengthened regarding safe, high quality, care.

“Deficiencies in the existing hospital estate were identified in the report as having contributed to the likelihood of transmission of infection on the wards.

"This underlines the need for significant investment to ensure all our hospitals are fit for purpose to meet the challenges of Covid and other new viruses in the modern era.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The report panel acknowledged that at the time of the outbreak, understanding of the transmission of COVID-19 was incomplete and evolving.

"It is essential that the findings set out in the report are carefully considered and implemented, taking account of more recent regional and national guidance,” the spokesperson added.