Lib Dems question deep clean "gimmick"

NHS cleaners question £50m "deep clean" strategy
NHS cleaners question £50m "deep clean" strategy

Opposition MPs have accused the government of prioritising spin over science, as its hospital deep cleaning policy comes under renewed attack.

Both NHS managers and cleaners have reignited criticism over the Department of Health's £50 million deep clean of hospital wards, touted as part of the government's strategy to combat hospital acquired infections.

The Cleaning and Support Services Association questioned this morning whether the funding would have been better invested in day-to-day cleaning.

And the NHS Confederation, which represents the majority of NHS organisations, said managers were sceptical about the strategy, announced by Gordon Brown in September.

Liberal Democrat health spokesman Norman Lamb said today that hospital hygiene policies need to be led by evidence of what actually works.

Mr Lamb speculated Mr Brown was more concerned with securing headlines than cutting infection rates.

He explained: "Policy should be led by evidence of what actually works, but this just smacks of gimmickry, sounding tough without guaranteeing results.

"Deep cleaning alone won't provide the change of culture which many hospitals need, instilling a constant, almost obsessive focus on cleanliness."

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