f you are currently trying to handle infections in your own ward or hospital then you are not alone. MRSA and other ‘superbugs’ pose a constant challenge to healthcare staff in UK hospitals and in some cases the problem is growing.
So we thought we would pull together some research to give you an idea of the wider problem. As well as showing you that you are far from alone, we will also give you some handy tips for minimizing infections in your own wards.
First, let’s take a look at some of the main culprits for serious infection.
MRSA – the facts
According to MRSA Action UK, between April 2015 and April 2016, bloodstream infections accounted for around 10% of all healthcare associated infections, with 4% being caused by MRSA.
Whilst 4% might seem like a low number, it actually accounted for hundreds of cases of MRSA in UK hospitals that year.
What is more, between 2014/15 and 2015/16 there was a 25% increase in the number of incidents of MRSA being reported in hospital, rising from 430 to 537 cases.
As MRSA can cause life-threatening infections, such as blood poisoning or endocarditis, if it gets into a break in the skin, preventing its spread in hospitals is clearly essential.
MRSA is not alone
Of course, MRSA is by no means the only infection that healthcare staff have to worry about.
In fact, MRSA Action UK puts hospital MSSA bloodstream infections at their highest levels for 5 years, with 2,910 cases reported in 2015/16. The picture looks worse in primary care, with an 18% increase in 5 years to 10,582.
In addition, Clostridium Difficile remains a concern, with 5164 reported cases in hospitals during 2015/16 and 14,139 in primary care.
So what can be done to try and stem these worrying numbers?
Reducing the risk of infection
With antibiotic resistance increasing in patients, it is vital to try and prevent the spread of infection in the first place.
As such, every ward and hospital needs a risk management programme that focuses on maintaining a clean environment for patients.
In other words, every touch point in a hospital should not only be clean but also repel infection wherever possible.
Fortunately, there are now a lot of ward management products on the market designed with infection control in mind, such as our own range of Patient Record Holders.
For example, our Anti-Microbial Patient Record Holder is manufactured using Lifelong Antimicrobial Silver-Ion Coating, an effective antimicrobial material that helps to keep the spread of infection risk at a minimum.
In addition, our Pet-G Patient Record Holder is manufactured from a closed cell material, which is infection-control friendly and biodegradable.
Whilst these products are only one element of an overall infection control strategy, they do address an important area of risk around the frequent handling of patient records – an easy win in the ongoing battle against the superbugs.
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