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NHS Matron numbers doubled

Health Secretary, Alan Johnson announced today that the government has met its pledge to double the number of matrons working in the NHS to 5,000
Health Secretary, Alan Johnson announced today that the government has met its pledge to double the number of matrons working in the NHS to 5,000.

Matrons are responsible for improving conditions and care for patients and their families. They assist with setting and monitoring standards for cleaning and catering, and have the power to take action to ensure they are met.

Increased powers will help matrons in the ongoing fight against hospital bugs such MRSA and C.difficile. Infection rates in the last quarter of 2007 showed a decrease of 30 per cent and 23 per cent, respectively when compared with the same period the previous year.

Johnson said: "Additional matrons have been recruited and given greater powers because if cleanliness is not up to scratch we expect matron to order additional cleaning and ensure that the highest standards are met or ensure that the cleaning contract is changed."

Matrons and clinical directors will report on infection control and cleanliness to Trust boards each quarter.

A new regulator, the Quality Care Commission, will have the power to follow up complaints of poor cleaning services with an inspection and potential fines.

6th June 2008

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