Hospital acquired infections at record low

The rate of Clostridium difficile and MRSA cases amongst over-65s acquired during healthcare have fallen to their lowest levels since recording began, thanks to Scottish Government initiatives.

From January to March 2012 there were:
•48 MRSA cases - down 30.4 per cent (from 69) when compared with the same quarter last year, and a reduction of four per cent (from 50) on the previous quarter
•334 C. diff cases in over 65s - down 6.2 per cent (from 356) when compared year-on-year and down 2.9 per cent (from 344) on the previous quarter.
•380 cases of SAB infections overall (MRSA and MSSA combined) - a decrease of 10.4 per cent (from 424) when compared with the previous year, and down 6.9 per cent (from 408) on the previous quarter

The Scottish Government has invested £50 million over the last three years in reducing Healthcare Acquired Infections (HAIs) and has introduced a range of measures including unannounced inspections and hundreds of additional cleaning staff.

Gil Paterson, member of the Scottish Parliament’s Health and Sport Committee, said:

“These latest figures are a vindication of the zero-tolerance approach the SNP Government has brought in to tackle hospital acquired infections.

“Hundreds of additional cleaning staff have been brought in and independent, unannounced inspections are carried out to make sure hospitals are as clean as they should be.

“Driving down these infection rates has been a key priority and I am delighted that the £50 million that has been invested in this is paying off.

“There is of course no room for complacency, but the fact that HAIs are at their lowest level ever recorded should be enormously reassuring to patients and their families across Scotland.

"The Scottish Government’s record of delivery in health, justice, policing and education show an overwhelming case for Scotland taking charge of all matters of policy in Scotland."