Inflatable door created in Derby aims to tackle bugs

Designer Paul Brooks with the 'Derby Door'
Image caption The door is designed to help staff with decontamination on the wards

An inflatable door has been designed and developed in Derby to help cut the risk of airborne infections in hospitals.

The device, manufactured in Bristol, fits against walls and ceilings on wards to form a complete seal.

It has been developed over a year at the Royal Derby Hospital by one of the managers, Paul Brooks.

He said the barrier can help staff clean individual bays without having to move everything out of the ward.

"What we can do is isolate the area, move the patients out, do the decontamination and simply just deflate the door and move on to the next one," Mr Brooks said.

Staff enter the so-called "Derby Door" through a resealable section in the middle.

It was designed to fit in with the hydrogen peroxide method of cleaning, used by many hospitals, and can be deployed after cases of Clostridium difficile or norovirus.

Infection control nurse specialist Helen Forrest said: "When we need to place patients together that have got the same infection it actually puts that barrier between the bay area and the ward environment."

The device costs about £599 and Derby Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust will get 30% of the profits, which managers hope can go into patient care.

As part of the manufacturing deal the trust will receive 10 of the doors over the next couple of months.

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