A NURSE fears Covid will spread within hospitals, claiming staff are being sent between so-called red and green wards.

The agency nurse - who wished to remain anonymous - said that he was being sent to Covid wards and then on different shifts, sent to non-Covid wards at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary. He said this risked spreading the virus within hospitals.

Red wards are wards with Covid patients, whereas green refers to non-Covid patients.

The source also claims he is told to go home and not work if he refused an assigned shift in a Covid ward.

“You could be going to a Covid ward and then the next day, you could be in a ward treating vulnerable people,” he added.

“I have elderly family myself that I’m worried about.”

Annie Well, a Conservative MSP for Glasgow said the revelation was “extremely concerning”.

She said: “It is misguided that nurses who are speaking out are then being asked to return home, at a time when we are tackling further hospital admissions.

“Robust measures should be in place across our hospitals which ensure that we minimise transmission of Covid inside them.”

Labour’s health spokeswoman Monica Lennon said that it was a “scandal that still fighting for routine weekly Covid-19 testing and for safe working practices,” eight months into the pandemic.

She added: “Tragically, patients under the care of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have died after being exposed to the virus in hospital and many staff continue to feel anxious about their own safety and the risk of unwittingly infecting others.

She added that it would be “impossible” to keep the NHS going over winter without providing staff with proper PPE and maintaining “Covid-safe spaces” in hospitals.

“Keeping our NHS going over winter is going to be impossible unless we address these vital safety concerns.”

The Royal College of Nurses (RCN) raised concerns about the level of staff absences, leading to greater reliance on agency workers.

Barbara Sweeney, an RCN senior officer, said: "Wards are filling up and the number of staff off sick or having to self-isolate is increasing. Nursing staff are already exhausted and this continued pressure is taking its toll. The health board must take steps to protect patients and staff and to ensure the right numbers of nursing staff are in place to meet the complex clinical needs of patients.”

An NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde spokeswoman said: “When we require agency staff to fill a shift it will be for a specific ward or clinical area. This can either be in a Covid or non-Covid ward, however, we do not expect any agency worker to work between Covid and non-Covid wards during a single shift. We have an established system for segregating patients through red and green Covid pathways within our hospitals to minimise cross-transmission. We would encourage any member of staff, including agency staff, to raise any concerns about this with us.

“Agency staff are only used to fill a shift when all other options have been exhausted, including our in-house nursing bank. If agency staff do not want to work in that particular ward or area we have no alternative but to fill the shift with someone else to ensure patient care continues safely.”