Blood-stained bedding in “cleaned” room at Carstairs


BLOOD-stained bedding and equipment were discovered during an unannounced visit to Scotland’s hospital for the criminally insane.

The State Hospital at Carstairs, South Lanarkshire, has been ordered to make sure all its fixtures are clean following the November 2013 visit.

Patients at the hospital include James Dunleavy, who was last week ordered to be detained there after he was found guilty of murdering and decapitating his mother Philomena before burying her dismembered remains on a hill in Edinburgh.

The Healthcare Environment Inspectorate (HEI) found several pillows in a room which had been cleaned and was ready for a new patient were “heavily stained”.

Inspectors released an image of a heavily-stained pillow found in a “cleaned” room


One was stained with blood, found the HEI.

Around 160 patients are detained at Carstairs, including some of Scotland’s most dangerous criminals, who are ruled unfit for normal detention.

Last month it was revealed three patients were involved in a plot to murder nurses on Christmas Eve at the facility.

Patients at the hospital were encouraged to clean their own rooms “to promote rehabilitation and independence,” the HEI report said.

The report noted the hospital had made improvement since the inspectors last visit, in May 2013, but still issued four separate “high priority” requirements to improve cleanliness and staff training.

It said: “We found minor levels of dust in patient bedrooms, particularly behind television and audio equipment.

“In one patient bedroom, we found that the pillows were heavily stained, one of which was stained with blood.

“This patient bedroom had been cleaned and was ready for a new patient.

“In another patient bedroom, we found that the mattress was visibly stained and there was a strong smell of stale urine in the room.”

The report also found staff were wearing watches and rings while on the ward, in breach of hygiene rules.

Probes used to analyse patients’ blood were also found to be stored with blood stains on them.

The report noted: “Although the amount of patient equipment at the State Hospital is minimal, staff awareness of cleaning schedules and their roles and responsibilities for completing these to show that patient equipment had been cleaned was poor.”

Equipment to clean up blood spillages at the hospital was also inadequate, the report found.

Last month it was revealed Carstairs had suffered 71 security breaches over the last three years, with critics calling for improved security at the facility.