Hospice and college team up for training

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Housekeeping and catering staff at the John Eastwood Hospice Trust in Sutton-in-Ashfield teamed up with West Nottinghamshire College for a training course earning them a new qualification.

The pilot programme, delivered at the Sutton Road-based hospice, has seen 11 members of the support services team achieve a level two in infection control qualification which covers learning about principles of infection, the causes and spread of infection and cleaning, and decontamination and waste management.

Site support services manager Kevin Smith said: “At the hospice we all have a responsibility to protect our patients by ensuring both the ward-based and day care areas are safe and clean environments. The housekeeping and catering staff have always been highly-competent but we wanted to cement their knowledge through an official infection control certificate.

“Each one of them took on their studies with interest and worked brilliantly together to share their own best practice as they worked through the units.”

Cook supervisor Carol Woodward was one of the team who studied the qualification over a 12-week period. She said: “It was daunting at first because we all knew how to do it, but we had to collate our knowledge together and show the assessors how. We were assessed every three weeks and had to show practical examples of how we apply infection control measures at the hospice.

“The tutor from West Notts College helped point us in the right direction and apply the knowledge we have into our everyday jobs.”

The staff, who are responsible for the cleanliness of the dining areas, day care centre and 12 inpatient bedroom areas, were also given maths and English skills updates as part of the programme.

The college’s specialist services manager Ann Ramsay said: “This is the first time the hospice has worked with the college to train its staff and I’m delighted that this pilot programme was such a success.

“The group worked incredibly well and enthusiastically through their studies and we hope to be able to support the hospice again with any training needs in the future.”