Hospitals are bug-free for the first time . . .

Wigan Infirmary has achieved zero infection rating for the first time
Wigan Infirmary has achieved zero infection rating for the first time

WIGAN hospitals’ top boss has praised the efforts of staff after the trust managed to have no recorded cases of infectious bugs in the whole of October - the first time it has ever happened.

Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh (WWL) NHS Foundation Trust boasted not a single outbreak of hospital-acquired MRSA, MSSA, E.Coli and C.Diff, making excellent news for patient safety according to chief executive Andrew Foster.

Mr Foster broke the news on twitter, when he wrote: “October was our first ever month with zero hospital acquired MRSA, C Diff, MSSA or E Coli.

“Well done to infection control.”

And he later added: “I am delighted that our infection results continue to improve.

“As a trust we take infection control extremely seriously and over the last year everyone has worked hard to reduce infection at each of our hospitals.”

In addition, cases of E.coli, Clostridium difficile (C.diff) and MSSA recorded at WWL during this period were the result of infections acquired by patients before they entered hospital.

For the first time, WWL exceeded 50 days between C.diff cases in October.

After a difficult start to the year, health chiefs say they are working hard to ensure it does not exceed the annual target of 25 C.diff cases set by the Department of Health.

The trust says it is also being more successful in minimising hospital-acquired MRSA and MSSA, with one case of MRSA and just three cases of MSSA acquired in WWL’s hospitals during the whole of 2013.

Lynda Barkess-Jones, the trust’s associate director of infection prevention and control, said: “We are pleased with our positive progress in minimising infection and will continue to reinforce the message that good hygiene is good practice and is the responsibility of everyone in the trust.

“Some of the ways we have improved include reducing the prescribing of certain antibiotics which reduce resistance to infections, reinforced hand hygiene and tackling each infection on a case by case basis, which is what patients expect.”

All three of the trust’s hospitals have introduced stringent MRSA screening for all patients coming into hospital for planned operations or treatment, in line with the NHS requirement for universal screening.