HOSPITAL kitchens across Britain are infested with rats, mice and cockroaches,
a Sun probe discovered.

Staff are poorly trained and basic health and hygiene procedures are regularly

We also found that in the last 18 months hospitals have been:

DISHING up meals contaminated with deadly bacteria and

REGULARLY serving out-of-date food.

Environmental health officers found 541 out of 731 kitchens probed were
breaking hygiene rules.

A total of 227 — almost one in three — were dirty while 57 stocked out-of-date

Council officers at West Park Hospital, Wolverhampton, found a rat rotting in
a cupboard near to the kitchen.

Transmission electron micrograph of Listeria monocytogenes bacteria found mostly in lower animals In humans it produces upper respiratory diseases septicemia and encephalitic diseases
They also spotted a food handler wiping their nose in a “high risk” area.

Ten NHS hospitals inspected had cockroaches in the kitchens and four had rats
or mice scampering near food preparation areas.

At Lewisham Hospital, South East London, inspectors found “widespread mouse
activity” and cockroaches breeding.

At Sandwell General Hospital. West Bromwich, sandwiches contaminated with
deadly listeria were served while at Rochdale Infirmary warm pre-packed
sandwiches were given to vulnerable patients.

general view of the outside of Lewisham Hospital
The Sun obtained the details under freedom of information rules.

Shadow health secretary Andy Burnham said last night: “Hospitals are
struggling to cope as the Government wastes billions on a back-office

“The Health Secretary must order an urgent investigation.”

One million hospital meals are served every day and lapses in hygiene
contribute to 300,000 infections a year. Health inspectors found many
kitchens were manned by untrained staff. They saw workers eating while
preparing meals and not washing their hands after breaks.

General view West Park Hospital,
At Petersfield Hospital, Hants, an officer saw “something move and go under
the fryers” only to be told it was “a loose grape”.

At Queen Mary’s, Sidcup, Kent, they found mouldy chopping boards and knives
put away dirty.

There was also a “serious cockroach infestation in the undercroft.”

Even the top hospitals were not immune. Christie’s in Manchester had frozen
meals eight months old. They should only be kept for three.

Sandwell General Hospital in West Bromwich
St Bart’s in London had rat and mouse droppings in the kitchens and reports of

Also in the capital, cockroaches were a problem in the kitchens at Moorfields
Eye Hospital and Chelsea and Westminster hospital.

Roger Goss, co-director of health watchdog Patient Concern, said our findings
made him feel ill.

He added: “It’s outrageous. If these were restaurants they’d be put out of
business and the owners would be put in court.” Health Minister Simon Burns
said: “This is totally unacceptable. A modern NHS should not be putting
patients at risk by failing to meet basic hygiene standards.

two rats
“We expect local authorities to take tough action where serious failures are

All hospitals contacted by The Sun said they had immediately complied with
instructions to put kitchens in order.

Lewisham NHS said: “We took urgent action to deal with pest control.”

Sandwell said an independent probe after a “positive result for a listeria
species” did not reveal “any issues relating to food preparation.”

General view of the exterior of the main entrance of St. Bartholomew's Hospital in Spitalfields,
Bosses at Royal Wolverhampton called the dead rat “an isolated incident”.

Queen Mary’s Hospital said cleaning issues had been resolved while Christie’s
said inspectors had given guidance on frozen food storage.

Rochdale Infirmary said problems over sandwiches had been resolved and
Petersfield Hospital said a recent inspection found kitchen standards

Bart’s said it had recently been awarded the best-possible rating while
Chelsea and Westminster said a new inspection praised its hygiene.


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