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IRIC safety alert

Safety Action Notice - SAN(SC)21/03

Published on 29 January 2021

From: Health Facilities Scotland

SAN(SC)21/03 - Oxygen Supply (COVID-19)



In relation to oxygen supplies within NHS Scotland hospitals and specialist services, health boards are reminded to be aware of:

Low supply pressure risk: If the demand through multiple wall outlets exceeds the maximum capacity of the vacuum insulated evaporator (VIE) delivery system (pipe network), there is a risk of an increased pressure drop in oxygen supply pipes. This could lead to difficulties with oxygen delivery systems throughout the hospital, including to patients on face masks, high flow nasal oxygen (HFNO2), Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) or other non-invasive ventilation (NIV), ventilators and operating theatres. There is also a risk of an accelerated depletion of the VIE. Both of these situations present a potentially significant risk to multiple patients simultaneously if no action is taken.