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Dispenser Disasters


Metsä Tissue describe a case study involving their own staff, as they uncover the problems with NHS cleanliness, all thanks to a dispenser downer.


All manufacturers of washroom products do their best to provide good quality. After all, they wouldn’t get far if they said: “Here’s a product that’s not very good – how many would you like?”


“However, what they do not always take into account is the experience, priority and ethos of the people who use those products”, said Mark Dewick, Metsä Tissue Sales Director, UK and Ireland. “The consequences of getting this wrong in a hospital environment include higher consumable costs, higher resource costs and the risk of infection for patients and staff alike.”


From firsthand experience, here’s what Mark means. One of Metsä


64 | HEALTHCARE & HOSPITAL HYGIENE


Tissue’s staff recently experienced a stay in an NHS hospital; the medical service was very good and all went well until they got to the washroom. The washroom featured a twin toilet roll holder and one roll had been finished. Being something of an industry expert, the Metsä Tissue staff member (or more importantly, the patient) attempted to access the second roll – unfortunately, the mechanism was jammed. Having just had surgery, the patient could not apply much force to the problem, but tried their hardest under the circumstances to slide the mechanism as appropriate. She was unable to.


Problem Plumbing Presented with this dilemma, she was left with no choice but to “mis-use


a hand towel”. This was despite the signs around the small bathroom unit saying ‘Please do not dispose of hand towels down the toilet’ – clearly, this had been a problem for the hospital previously, but what’s a girl to do?


So, once ablutions had been performed, the patient exited the bathroom and advised the ward sister of the problem, who told her it had been like that for months and that she would get a new roll from store right away. The dispenser was locked and the key was only held by the organisation’s FM company, and they had already completed their cleaning round for the day. So, the new roll was placed on top of the dispenser, where it stayed all day, open to bacteria, able to fall on the floor and handled by all


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