HEALTH Secretary Jeremy Hunt said yesterday that NHS hospitals will receive extra funds if they reduce infection rates.
Mr Hunt said hospitals that reduce E. coli infections by 10 per cent, prevent urinary tract infections and use antibiotics appropriately will share a £45 million pot.
Hospitals will also be forced to publish figures on the hand hygiene of their staff, based on the amount of cleansing gel used, under the plans.
Health Campaigns Together spokesperson John Lister dismissed the offer “a joke,” saying: “It shows complete contempt for front-line staff.”
He added that the “financial plight of hospitals is dire, worsening month by month due to this government’s policies, with the reduction in staffing likely to increase infections.”
The news comes as a TUC report highlights that funding pressures in the NHS are “putting patients at risk and are damaging services.”
Nine out of 10 health workers who responded to the survey said they believed the NHS was under more pressure than at any time in their working lives.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “No-one knows the NHS better than the people who work for it and the message from health workers is clear — funding pressures are putting patients at risk and damaging services.”
Calling for a cash injection, Ms O’Grady said “The Autumn Statement is a big opportunity for the Chancellor to provide the funding our health service desperately needs.
“Keeping the NHS running and transforming its services can’t be done on the cheap. The health service needs an immediate funding boost and a long-term financial plan.”