Select Committee on Health Written Evidence


Memorandum by PatientPak Ltd (PS 37)

PATIENT SAFETY

INTRODUCTION AND CONTENTS

  We welcome the Select Committee's inquiry into patient safety, which encompasses a wide range of important issues. We concentrate on one of those in this submission; the problem of healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs).

  PatientPak Ltd manufactures a comprehensive personal hygiene kit that is proven to kill MRSA and other superbugs. Whilst we do not deny that we have an interest, we believe that there are some new initiatives that the NHS should adopt in the battle against HCAIs, whichever product is used. Whilst there are numerous products which purport to combat HCAIs, we are confident that PatientPak is the most comprehensive and most effective, as evidenced by the clinical test data[203] and the fact that our exclusive patented formula is already used and trusted by the NHS[204].

  Our submission applies to the following terms of reference:

    —  The role of public perceptions of risk in determining NHS policy

    —  Whether past spending on patient safety has been sufficient and cost effective, and what future spending should be

    —  What the NHS should do next regarding patient safety

    —  How to determine best practice and ensure it is spread throughout the whole NHS

    —  How patients and the public can be involved in ensuring that services are safe

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

  1.  The problem:

    1.1.  Human costs: superbugs such as MRSA and C. difficile kill thousands of patients every year in NHS hospitals and cause pain and misery to many more.

    1.2.  Financial costs: it costs on average £9000[205] more to treat a patient who contracts an infection. In addition, there are other financial consequences of superbugs such as litigation and loss of earnings.

    1.3.  The Government has taken considerable action against superbugs but the problem remains.

    1.4.  Every individual can carry and spread HCAIs[206], which means that there is a limit to how effective organisational policy alone can be in their prevention.

    1.5.  The public is extremely worried about HCAIs and patients feel powerless to protect themselves when they go into hospital.

  2.  The solution—the NHS should provide means by which patients can protect themselves, more specifically, products that are proven to be effective against HCAIs. This will:

    2.1.  Reduce HCAI infection rates, thereby reducing the human and financial costs,

    2.2.  Engender a sense of shared responsibility for combating infection that applies to patients and visitors as well as hospital staff.

    2.3.  Allow patients who would otherwise feel vulnerable to exert control over their own safety, leading to peace of mind.

    2.4.  Instil an ethos of good personal hygiene, bearing in mind that if you protect yourself, you protect others.

Why products such as PatientPak that are proven to kill HCAIs should be available to all NHS patients

  1.  The NHS and the Government are, of course, acutely aware of the problem of healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs) and have undertaken a range of measures to reduce infection rates. While it is not for us to comment on the efficacy of specific measures or the infection-rate statistics, it is clear that the Government has taken considerable action but that the problem of superbugs remains and is likely to increase with more resistant strains.

  2.  The nature of HCAIs, particularly how they are spread from person to person, means that there is a limit to how successful public organisational policy alone can be in their prevention. For instance, most individuals who carry MRSA are not affected by the organism, yet nevertheless are able to pass it on to others, whether inside or outside controlled environments. Indeed, around 3% of the public, rising to 6-7% of those admitted to hospital, are carriers of MRSA[207]. As every individual can carry and spread HCAIs, reducing HCAIs requires everyone—not just hospital staff but also patients and visitors—to act responsibly and take proper precautions. Therefore, patients should be provided with the means to protect themselves, thus engendering an ethos of shared responsibility. If people protect themselves by using products with a proven efficacy against HCAIs, they protect others around them.

  3.  There is serious public concern about the threat posed to patients by HCAIs such as MRSA and C. difficile, and this concern manifests itself in feelings of vulnerability when one goes into hospital, and anger if an infection is contracted. Those who go into hospital for treatment are putting their personal safety in the hands of others, which leads to a feeling of impotence. Using the antimicrobial products proven to kill MRSA and other superbugs, such as those contained in PatientPak[208], reduces the chance of infection but also brings peace of mind. Rather than being totally dependent on outside agencies such as the hospital's procedures, the individual can exert control over their own safety and increase the safety of others. Empowering the individual patient will reduce their fear of contracting a HCAI and clearly and positively demonstrate to them and their visitors that the NHS/Government is making every effort to protect them.

  4.  Promoting effective cleaning and hygiene practices through a process of education is the optimum way of reducing HCAIs. Ostensibly simple or self-explanatory tasks such as hand washing, which are too often disregarded, need to be carried out in a rigorous and systematic way; good habits need to be established early. Patients should be equipped and fully informed about the best methods of protecting themselves, which would include access to hygiene products that are proven to kill dangerous germs[209]. If patients are aware of best-practice and its importance then they will have the confidence and motivation to encourage others to take personal hygiene seriously.

  5.  It costs the NHS on average about £9,000[210] more to treat a single patient with an infection such as MRSA, C difficile or Norovirus. Almost one in ten in-patients in Scottish hospitals, for example, contracts a HCAI[211]. It therefore costs £900[212] per in-patient to treat healthcare associated infections, irrespective of whether the patient contracts an infection. For about 1% of this, the NHS could provide each in-patient with a PatientPak or another product that is proven to kill HCAIs.

  6.  PatientPak is proven to kill 99.999% of germs, including MRSA and other superbugs. Whilst there are numerous products which purport to combat HCAIs, we are confident that PatientPak is the most comprehensive and most effective, as evidenced by the clinical test data and the fact that our exclusive formula is already used and trusted by the NHS.

Jonathan Sayeed

Chairman

September 2008

Appendix 1

PatientPak: test data, scientific and technical information

    —  The core of PatientPak is specially formulated antimicrobial sanitising wipes and sprays.

    —  PatientPak products contain a patented formula developed by Medical Doctors that is proven to kill at least 99.999% of germs, including MRSA and other superbugs.

    —  The formula in PatientPak is tested and successfully meets the requirements of the following European standards as well as other microbiological standards

    —  EN1276

    —  prEN12054

    —  EN1500

    —  EN1275

    —  The germs that PatientPak products are proven to be effective against include:

    —  MRSA

    —  Vegetative C. difficile

    —  PVL (Panton-Valentine leukocidin)-secreting bacteria

    —  Avian Influenza (H5N1)

    —  Hepatitis B and C

    —  Norovirus

    —  Salmonella

    —  E coli

    —  Campylobacter

    —  PatientPak products are proven to be effective against MRSA in 10 seconds.

    —  The manufacturing plant is SGS Accredited with strict quality control processes according to the following internationally recognised standards:

    —  ISO 9001

    —  ISO 13485

    —  GMB

    —  The patented formula in the PatientPak antimicrobial products has been clinically tested at numerous institutions and testing facilities, including:

    —  Centre for Infectious Diseases, Queen Mary's School of Medicine;

    —  Micropatholgy Ltd, based at the University of Warwick ;

    —  University of Leeds;

    —  University of Huddersfield;

    —  CUTEST Systems Ltd, Cardiff (Skin specialists)

    —  The antimicrobial formula is commercially exclusive to PatientPak and is already used extensively in NHS hospitals.

    —  It is dermatologically tested and safe to use in food preparation areas

    —  The patented antimicrobial formula contained in PatientPak is called Clinell. Clinell products have been assessed by the NHS Rapid Review Panel and a recommendation 2 was achieved and a recommendation 1 is expected pending further testing.

    —  The antimicrobial formulation mediates against resistance by ensuring the widest spectrum of activity; the synergistic mix of quaternary ammonium compounds and the polymeric biguanide each have a completely different mechanism of action.

    —  The residual action of the PatientPak products is increased by lead agents reinforced by a combination of secondary slower acting biocides, a formulation which also increases efficacy against fungi and mycobacteria.

Appendix 2

Declaration of NHS use

  I, the undersigned, hereby declare that

  Clinell Universal Sanitising Wipes

(Disinfecting and Detergent Wet Wipes)

    —  are used extensively within the UK National Health Service (NHS) hospitals.

    —  contain the same formula that is used in the PatientPak products.

  Signed (on behalf of GAMA Healthcare Limited): Dr Guy Braverman

  Date: 22/07/2008

Appendix 3

PatientPak—contents

    —  Antimicrobial Sanitising Wipes*—contains the patented antimicrobial formula proven to kill MRSA and other superbugs. For use on surfaces, particularly those that are most likely to harbour germs.

    —  Antimicrobial Hand Sanitising Spray*—contains the patented antimicrobial formula proven to kill MRSA and other superbugs. Easy to apply and allows regular disinfection of hands. Only 5% alcohol content—helps ensure that hands don't dry or become sore after multiple use.

    —  Antimicrobial Fabric Spray*—contains the patented antimicrobial formula proven to kill MRSA and other superbugs. This new product has been developed to kill germs that can survive on fabric.

    —  Antimicrobial hair and body wash*—contains the patented antimicrobial formula proven to kill MRSA and other superbugs.

    —  Soap and nail brush—clean hands are vital to prevent the spread of germs. These items help remove spores such as C. difficile and other harmful microbes.

    —  Face and body wipes—designed to be gentle on the skin, leaving the user clean and fresh. The formula contains a softener to protect skin during long-term use.

    —  Toothbrush and toothpaste—for everyday good dental hygiene. The disposable brush ensures that microbes are not carried between hospital and home.

    —  Lip balm - to help prevent lips becoming dry or sore, which often happens in sterile hospital environments and when you are ill.

    —  Disposable pen—disposable to prevent transfer of germs between hospital and home

    —  Guide to good hygiene—this advice leaflet explains how best to combat superbugs, viruses and bacteria. There is also a bedside notice—an initiative suggested by the charity, MRSA Action UK.





Also see http://www.clean-safe-care.nhs.uk/ArticleFiles/Files/

CleanSafeCare_ReducingInfectionsAndSavingLives_Strategy.pdf where it says that financially it can cost between £4,000 and £10,000 more to treat a patient with an infection (DoH)





203  
Please see appendix 1 for a summary of the test data and other technical information Back

204   Please see appendix 2 for a declaration from the manufacturer that the Clinell formula in PatientPak is already used extensively in NHS hospitals Back

205   http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/2194132/Every-MRSA-case-costs-NHS-an-extra and1639%2C000.html Back

206   For instance, around 3% of the public, rising to 6-7% of those admitted to hospital, are carriers of MRSA-http://www.clean-safe-care.nhs.uk/ArticleFiles/Files/CleanSafeCare_ReducingInfectionsAndSavingLives_Strategy.pdf Back

207   http://www.clean-safe-care.nhs.uk/ArticleFiles/Files/CleanSafeCare_ReducingInfectionsAndSavingLives_Strategy.pdf Back

208   Please see appendix 3 for the list of items contained in each PatientPak Back

209   Each PatientPak contains a hygiene guide for those going into hospital-see http://www.patientpak.com Back

210   http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/2194132/Every-MRSA-case-costs-NHS-an-extra and1639%2C000.html Back

211   http://news.scotsman.com/scotland/All-patients-to-be-tested.4143673.jp Back

212   With regard to the average cost per in-patient of treating HCAIs, it is surprising to see that in an answer to a Parliamentary Question (Hospitals: Infectious Diseases, 1 Sep 2008 : Column 1714W), 14 year-old figures were used Back


 
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