“It is alarming that two departments lacked a written plan for chemical incidents and a further nine could not access theirs at the time of interview,” notes Mr Darren Walter, who led the research team from the University Hospital of South Manchester. “There could be delays or even failures in contacting appropriate personnel from within and outside the hospital in the majority of hospitals, leading to substandard handling of patients, possibly with unnecessary risks to staff.”
Since October 2005 all UK emergency departments are required by law to provide and maintain chemical decontamination facilities. The survey revealed that whilst all of the Northwest's 18 emergency departments had a designated decontamination area, it was questionable whether some departments could respond appropriately during a chemical incident.
Around 1300 chemical incidents occur in the UK each year, most involving fewer than 10 casualties.
In face-to-face interviews, only 11 of 18 Nurse Managers (or a nominated deputy) said they felt their department had an adequately equipped decontamination area. For example, although three-quarters of departments had systems to trap water (containing potentially toxic or radioactive substances), 60% had capacity for less than one hour before effluent could enter the regular waste water network.
Only nine departments felt they could maintain patient dignity during decontamination procedures, mostly by using screens.
The study authors call for national guidelines on decontamination facilities and procedures. “There are major gaps in the preparedness of Northwest hospitals for chemical incidents,” says Walter. “Until standards are set and enforced it is likely that these inconsistencies will remain.”
Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung
Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D
07.08.2017 | University of Manchester
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
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