Norfolk and Norwich misses MRSA target.
- From: "Pat Gardiner" <patgardiner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Mon, 14 Apr 2008 21:24:28 +0100
Pat's Note: The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital did not meet its
targets last year for MRSA.
In one way that is surprising, in another it is not.
It is a damn good hospital, modern and pretty clean too, but it is smack
bang in the middle of pig country. It is exactly where you would expect
problems if British pigs do have MRSA.
The surgeons keep pigs, the nurses keep pigs, the patients keep pigs and the
visitors keep pigs. The only thing missing is the pigs themselves.
I've been in a six bed ward. My wife kept pigs, two other patients
slaughtered pigs and one was (wait for it....) a government vet. Our
visitors kept pigs or were butchers. Only the pigs failed to come and see us
So, we now have the situation where the hoospital is blaming the care homes
for sending them patients with MRSA, and the care homes are blaming the
hospital for discharging patients with MRSA.
Everyone agrees that there should be more screening. In a world of scarce
resources and priorities, those should be targeted on those who are most
likely to be carriers of MRSA. That is people handling pigs and pork.
The Dutch and many others do that openly and honestly. They have for years
published both the dangers and the solutions - and have the situation in
their hospitals well under control.
Canada has more serious problems with high rates of MRSA, very sick pigs and
contaminated pork on the supermarket shelves, but they do at least know to
watch for associations with pigs and pork in their patients. They are on the
Britain's bent government vets won't even test the pigs and pork. In theory
we do not know if British pigs have MRSA.
They are obviously going to have to take full legal responsibility if, as I
expect the pigs, turn out to be a source of human MRSA.
This newsgroup, uk.business.agriculture, provides a seven year record of
much relevant material.
Some deliberately removed from the WWW, and available free of charge for
investigators and lawyers dealing with the human consequences of the
reckless behavior of Britain's former State Veterinary Service and Food
Further resources and information are available elsewhere. Details of access
available on request.
Public urged to keep it clean
14 April 2008 15:00
Hospital bosses have said the battle against superbugs needs to start in the
community - as well as on the wards.
Dr John Battersby, director of public health for NHS Norfolk, formally the
Norfolk Primary Care Trust, said the battle against infections such as MRSA
and Clostridium difficile (C diff) is already well underway in hospitals.
This is despite the fact that during 2007 the Norfolk and Norwich University
Hospital failed to meet its targets for cases of MRSA, recording 31 in the
12 month period, five more than they were targeted to do.
However, he has put forward a report to go before the Norfolk Health
Overview and Scrutiny Committee on Thursday saying the next stage must be to
work in the community, in places such as nursing homes and care homes, to
stem the infections linked to poor hygiene that end up being brought into
He said: "Infections can come in from the home, from community hospitals,
from residential or nursing homes - they could come from anywhere.
"The issue is not exclusively to hospital wards. It is extremely rare for
someone to contract a superbug without any contact with a ward - but it is
Superbugs are contracted through open wounds, so patients in hospitals
having medical procedures such as drips put in or catheters, are more likely
to catch MRSA or C diff.
People living in residential or care homes are considered at greater risk as
they are more likely to go into hospital - so there is an emphasis placed on
ensuring those living in those "community" settings are vigilant about
Frank Ursell, chief executive officer of the Registered Nursing Homes
Association, said: "So many people carry the infections and don't know. In
the main it only manifests itself in older people, but anybody can be a
"We need to tackle the screening issue - it's the only way. We should be
screening people before they're released from hospital - that's when the
tests should be. The key is knowing, so when people go back to a care home
or residential home we can deal with it."
But Linda Gill, information and advice manager from Age Concern Norfolk,
said the blame should not be placed completely on the elderly and that
everyone needs to be aware of the importance of good hygiene when entering
hospitals either as a patient or visitor.
She said: "Health professionals need to tell all members of the general
public about superbugs. There should be a public awareness campaign, as most
people still don't know the symptoms, how it's contracted or how to deal
with it. Everyone should be concerned with their personal hygiene.
Test British pigs for MRSA now!
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