PATIENTS were put at risk of infection at a Southampton clinic where there was no antibacterial hand wash, disposable gloves or other cleaning materials.

Investigators also discovered the premises were only cleaned once a week, risking cross contamination between patients.

Concerns were also raised over the vetting of staff before they were hired.

Standards were found to be so poor that patients being treated at Saxon Clinic were at “risk of infection”, “unsafe practices” and “abuse”.

Bosses have been warned to take immediate action in all six areas that failed to meet standards, something which the practice manager insists has already happened.

Serious concerns were raised by inspectors during the unannounced inspection in December, particularly over the cleanliness of the practice in Saxon Gate, as well as infection control.

These relate to the family planning side of the clinic, which offers gynaecology treatments and pregnancy scans a couple of times a week, and not the dental services also on offer.

The report said: “Effective systems were not in place to reduce the risk and spread of infection and keep the service clean.

“We found that there were no cleaning materials in the clinic for immediate use during the clinic or in between patients.

“This was a clinic where there was a risk of spillage of bodily fluids.

“There was also no antimicrobial hand wash. This put people at risk of exposure to a health care associated infection and cross infection from other people.”

Another major concern for inspectors was that medicines and prescription pads were found in unlocked drawers and rooms, where anyone could have access to them, while patient confidentiality was put at risk with personal records being left on the desk of an unlocked consultation room.

Inspectors were concerned at the risk posed to patients due to the lack of a system to deal with emergencies and that there was no evidence that staff were appropriately vetted before being hired.

A spokesman from the CQC said: “The failings identified when we inspected the Saxon Clinic were serious and required immediate attention.

“If we find that the service is not making the required progress we won’t hesitate to use our legal powers further to protect the people who use its services.”

Daniel Stachurski, practice manager, said the gynaecological side had been suspended while changes are being made to ensure all standards are met when inspectors return next month.

He said: “I apologise that I wasn’t here for a lot of last year, so I wasn’t able to keep up with what was going on here.

“The report told us exactly what we needed to do to make sure everything is put right and we have already taken the action to do that.”