East Midlands infection cases hit all-time low

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THE number of MRSA cases in the East Midlands has fallen with only five cases of infection being recorded in the whole of the region last month.

The drop in cases reflects the hard work of both staff and public in the region.

NHS staff have been focussing on tackling infection control in a number of ways including carrying out deep cleans and participating in awareness campaigns. While the public are also helping by being more vigilant about cleaning their hands when entering and leaving NHS premises.

One of the campaigns that all the NHS organisations in the East Midlands took part in was ‘Hand in Hand, fighting infection together’. This campaign was launched in December 2007 and was aimed at helping reduce cases of healthcare associated infections.

The campaign included a wide range of awareness boosting initiatives from talking cardboard nurses which remind you to wash your hands and materials to show you the most effective way of doing this, to a targeted television and radio advertising campaign and staff training films.

The commitment of staff to the campaign’s aims was shown by the results of polls2 taken in April 2010 which revealed that 40 per cent more patients were confident that their hospital environment was clean than in October 2008.

Also, figures recorded shortly after the campaign launched (between January and March 2008) show that there were 51 cases of MRSA infections in East Midlands’ hospitals whereas between April and June 2011, the number of cases has been reduced to nine, a fall of 82.4 per cent.

Lynn Andrews, Assistant Director of Patient Care at NHS East Midlands said: “These impressive figures show the determination and commitment of our staff to reduce incidences of healthcare infections such as MRSA.

“The campaign also helped the public to understand the significant steps being taken in the NHS in the East Midlands to tackle infection control issues and the significant part they can play in reducing healthcare infections such as cleaning their hands when entering NHS premises.

“NHS staff in the East Midlands will now continue with the good work, as one avoidable infection is one too many.”