Survey: 5.4 percent of Patients Have Healthcare Associated Infection

Armen Hareyan's picture

New figures released show that 5.4 percent of patients surveyed in 15 acute hospitals in Northern Ireland had a Healthcare-associated Infection (HCAI).The figures, which were released today by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (DHSSPS), revealed that the most common infections were surgical site infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonias and gastro-intestinal infections. MRSA was present in 0.9 percent of patients surveyed (0.2 percent of patients had an MRSA bactaeremia), while C.difficile was seen in 1.1 percent of patients.


The survey involved over 3,600 patients in Northern Ireland. Parallel surveys were carried out in England, Wales and the Republic of Ireland, giving this prevalence survey a unique snapshot look at the situation facing hospitals.

A spokesperson for the DHSSPS said: ''Hospitals from across the UK and Republic of Ireland took part in this survey which involved thousands of patients. The extent of the survey shows how seriously hospitals view the issue of Healthcare-associated Infection and the value of taking a collaborative approach across the UK and Ireland in order to beat HCAI.

"A web-based system has been developed for participating hospitals which will help them to plan their infection control strategies and focus on areas of local concern. Northern Ireland has one of the lowest rates of infection but we cannot afford to be complacent. It is everyone's responsibility to improve hygiene standards throughout the health service including hospital staff, patients and the general public."

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