Leading surgeon interrupts Cameron hospital visit

A senior surgeon interrupted a hospital visit by David Cameron and Nick Clegg
to complain that the TV crews filming them were not observing strict hygiene

<br />
David Nunn left the Prime Minister and
Deputy Prime Minister stunned with his angry outburst during the
walkabout at Guy’s hospital in London Bridge. 

He stormed into the ward shouting “sorry, sorry, sorry” as the
politicians were about to sit down and talk to patients, before
confronting the cameramen who had failed to roll up their sleeves as
medics are required to do in order to combat the spread of superbugs in
the NHS. 

Mr Nunn, a consultant
orthopaedic surgeon at Guy’s since 1990, pointed out his own short
sleeves and demanded: “Why is it that we’re all told to walk around like
this, and these people aren’t?” 
He was ushered away by aides while Mr Clegg looked on open-mouthed, while Mr Cameron attempted to calm the situation by waving the cameramen towards the door. 

Mr Nunn started to speak to the Prime Minister but he held his hands
up, said he agreed with him and explained to the TV crew: “It’s because
we’ve all taken our ties off.”

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In a filmed clip of the incident, which was posted online by ITV News
and quickly went “viral” among Twitter users, the consultant can be seen
standing outside the ward and shouting: “I’m not having it, now out.” 
He then stalks off as the camera crew make a hasty retreat. 

However they had been told by the ward sister that they did not need to
abide by the “bare below the elbows” rules because they were not coming
into close contact with patients, unlike the MPs, who were at the
hospital to announce the latest NHS reform plans. 

A spokeswoman
for Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust said: “Arrangements for
today’s visit were entirely consistent with the Trust’s infection
control policy. 

“One individual member of staff expressed
concern with one element of the infection control measures employed, but
this was not a view shared by the wider team.” 

Mr Nunn had previously written to The Daily Telegraph about the “dress code” imposed on his hospital. 

“I now have to half undress to see my patients, and have certainly not
been provided with any protective uniform, any more than I was provided
with a white coat,” he wrote in 2007.
“While I wholeheartedly
endorse any measure to reduce the risk of infection, I cannot see this
but as window dressing. The problem of cross-infection in hospitals in
Britain is caused by an adherence to the use of open wards instead of
individual rooms, and by the level of bed-occupancy caused by the
reduction of total bed numbers, and the need to ‘hot-bed’ to achieve
government-dictated targets.” 

The hip replacement specialist,
who qualified in 1978 and also carries out private work, made the news
in 2002 when he complained that foreign nurses could not understand his

He said at the time: “The world has been scoured
for nurses to shore up the health service. All are without doubt, well
trained and dedicated. 

“But if medical staff cannot communicate effectively then patients’ care may be put at risk.”