Rats found at Northampton General Hospital four times, FOI reveals

The hospital said they take the cleanliness of the grounds and site incredibly seriously.
The hospital said they take the cleanliness of the grounds and site incredibly seriously.

Over five years pest control experts have been called to Northampton General Hospital 127 times - and four of those times were for incidents involving rats.

An freedom of information request submitted to Northampton General Hospital (NGH) has revealed that the hospital has faced 127 incidents of pests on their premises in the past five years.

The request asked the number of times NGH has called pest control between August 1, 2014 and August 1, 2019 and a breakdown of the reasons why they were called.

A spokeswoman for Northampton General Hospital said the hospital always acts immediately when staff have become aware of a problem.

She said: “We take the safety of our patients, staff and visitors very seriously and do all we can to ensure our site is as clean and pest-free as possible.

"We always act immediately when there are pests reported to us."

The most prolific bugs at the hospital were ants which were found 63 times and wasps which caused a problem on 33 occasions. Among the 127 call-outs rodents, including rats, were found four times and mice five times.

Other creatures included bluebottles, pigeons, silverfish, cluster flies, house flies, red mites, filter flies, cockroaches, one beehive and flies.

The hospital spokeswoman added: “NGH is located on a 50-acre site. On occasion we have had to introduce pest control measures to respond to disturbances of natural habitats during site developments.

"Our priority is always to deal with any issues so that patients, visitors and staff are unaffected.

“At the same time as ensuring we have effective pest control management processes in place, which include hawks to discourage pigeons, as you can read in our latest Insight magazine.

"We are also keen to maintain an ecosystem which respects wildlife and in some patient gardens we have created wildflower meadows to support our local bee population.”