Healthcare Health and Safety Level 2 (VTQ)

57 videos, 2 hours and 32 minutes

Course Content

Hot Water and Hot Surfaces

Video 13 of 57
1 min 55 sec
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Many people in care homes are at a higher risk of receiving scalds and burns, either due to a reduced mental capacity, or because their reactions are not fast enough to prevent the injury from occurring. An assessment of each resident should be carried out to see if their mental or physical state allows them to detect and prevent possible scald or burn hazards. Any information gathered from this must be detailed in their care plan, and necessary precautions or protection must be established. In a care home, common causes of scalding include baths that are run too hot, excessively hot drinks, and the most common causes of burning include the touching of skin against radiators and kitchen appliances.

Hot water is used throughout a care home setting, and using a suitable thermometer can assure both residents and staff that the water will not cause scalding. Thermostatic mixing valves are advised to be used in all appropriate outlets, as not only will this minimise scalding risks by bringing the temperature of running water below 44°C, but this will also reduce the risk of Legionella bacteria. Fluctuations in water temperature can also occur in domestic showers, presenting a major scalding risk. Therefore, using healthcare-standard electric showers along with regular safety testing allows for the equipment to remain reliable and not pose a threat to safety.

Exposed hot surfaces should not be able to reach above 43°C, as this could cause burns, should contact with skin occur. Covering exposed pipes and radiators are a must, as these can reach extremely hot temperatures. Places to look out for exposed hot surfaces include the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom, and should any be identifed, they should be dealt with as a highest priority.