Trust celebrates 1,000 days without MRSA

20 December 2012
Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is celebrating 1,000 days without a single case of hospital-acquired MRSA bacteraemia (blood stream) infection in their hospitals – making them the top performing trust in the East Midlands. 

This success is down to the Trust's zero tolerance approach to healthcare associated infections.  The last case of MRSA bacteraemia was recorded on 18 March 2010, which makes Sherwood Forest Hospitals a leader in the East Midlands region for stamping out the infection.

Suzanne Morris, Nurse Consultant in Infection Prevention and Control for the Trust, said: "The Trust is committed to providing first class patient care and that is why infection control is one of our most important priorities.

"Our strict cleaning, hygiene and hand-washing practices, as well as our antibiotic prescribing policy, have resulted in our infection rates continuing to remain some of the lowest in the UK".

As part of their commitment to providing the highest level of care, the Trust routinely screens patients for MRSA when they are admitted into one of their hospitals. If the patient is found to have the bacteria living on their skin they are given a course of treatment to reduce the number of bacteria.    

The Trust also continues to raise awareness of the importance of effective hand hygiene to relatives and visitors by encouraging them to wash their hands or use hand gels.

Eric Morton, Chief Executive of Sherwood Forest Hospitals, said: "1,000 days without a single case of hospital-acquired MRSA bacteraemia is fantastic news for our patients and visitors.

"This outstanding achievement is a result of our zero tolerance approach to infections and reflects the commitment of all our staff to providing first class patient care."

ENDS

Notes to editors

Staphylococcus aureus is a common coloniser (lives on) of the skin that can cause disease, particularly if there is an opportunity for the bacteria to enter the body.  Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a type resistant to antibiotics such as flucloxacillin, which is normally used to treat these kinds of infections. 

A small percentage of the population will be colonised with MRSA. It is normally harmless, and people do not go on to develop an infection, however colonisation is a known risk factor and if it gets into open wounds it could cause a wound infection, and on rare occasions it could get into the bloodstream and cause a blood stream infection

When a new patient is admitted into hospital, a swab is taken from their nose and other sites to screen them for MRSA. If the patient is found to have the bacteria living on their skin, they can be given a course of treatment called eradication therapy to reduce the number of bacteria on their skin. This reduces the chance of MRSA getting into wounds or places where it might cause a problem. 

Issued by the Trust's Communications Department
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