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Infection Control

Superbugs hit crowded Ottawa hospital

December 17, 2010
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OTTAWA — The Ottawa Hospital is blaming overcrowding for an outbreak of antibiotic-resistant "superbug" bacteria at its Civic and General campuses, according to CBC News.
Both campuses of the hospital are fighting outbreaks of vancomycin-resistant Enterococci (VRE), while the Civic campus''s intensive-care unit has six patients who''ve been isolated with Clostridium difficile (C. diff), which causes severe vomiting and diarrhea, the article stated.
An outbreak of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has also hit a section of the Civic campus, the article noted.
Dr. Kathy Suh, director for infectious diseases at the hospital, said hospitals often have to deal with these germs each year, but said the incidents of VRE this year are particularly high.
"We try to identify patients who have these early, admit them to private rooms where possible, and then for staff we require they wear special protective equipment before they go in to care for these patients," said Suh.
According to the article, the hospital has increased cleaning and housekeeping of patient rooms and equipment and is reminding all visitors and staff to wash hands frequently and use alcohol-based hand rubs to stop infection.
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