September 5, 2008
Ward Closed After C Diff Bug Kills a Patient and Infects More
By WILLIAM TINNING
A HOSPITAL ward has been closed to new admissions after the Clostridium Difficile bacteria contributed to one patient dying and seven others being infected.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde declined to give any details about the victim, who died at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley on August 27.
The health trust said the death occurred amid a C Diff outbreak in one ward at the hospital which affected eight patients over a four-week period.
The cases come after Scotland's worst outbreak of C Diff at the Vale of Leven Hospital in West Dunbartonshire, where nine people died as a direct result of the infection and C Diff was a "contributory factor" in the deaths of nine others.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said C Diff was a "contributory factor" but not the main cause of death of the patient who died at the Royal Alexandra.
It said that a second patient infected with the bug died of a serious underlying medical condition but the death was not related to C Diff. A third patient affected by the bug has been treated and discharged while five others are being treated in isolation at the hospital.
The area procurator-fiscal for Argyll and Clyde is currently considering whether to bring charges against NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde following the Vale of Leven outbreak which affected more than 50 patients between December and June this year and Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon has ordered an independent inquiry.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde apologised to patients and families after the publication last month of a review team's report which blamed inadequate infection control procedures and poor hygiene at the hospital for the deaths. The report also said there had been poor monitoring and implementation of policy on the use of antibiotics.
C Diff causes diarrhoea and is linked to poor hygiene and the over-use of antibiotics.
Ms Sturgeon said the report made "disturbing reading" and painted a picture of "appalling and unacceptable" conditions at the Vale of Leven. She passed the review document to the Lord Advocate who in turn asked the area procurator-fiscal to look into it.
The latest C Diff death comes as health chiefs ordered an investigation after four patients contracted the E-coli O157 superbug following a stay at Ninewells Hospital, Dundee, last month.
Originally published by Newsquest Media Group.
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