Reports Show Hospitals have High Rates of C. diff

A report shows that a germ that wreaks havoc in people’s guts is infecting hospital patients at a much higher rate than had been previously estimated. The study found that slightly more than 1 in every 100 hospital patients are struck by Clostridium difficle which is commonly referred to as C. diff. The bacterium can cause severe diarrhea nausea and abdominal pain and sometimes can lead to colon failure or even death. Experts suggest that we need programs to improve cleanliness and hand-washing by hospital staff. Additionally there should be better control over antibiotics that can increase susceptibility to infections. The study was conducted by the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology and was done in 648 hospitals in 47 states. It found that 13 out of every 1,000 patients in the hospital either had C. diff infections or carried the bug on their bodies. This figure is 6.5 times higher than previous estimates. C diff. spores can live on heard surfaces for weeks or month and resists every-contaminant except bleach. A problem is that the alcohol-based hand gels now omnipresent in hospitals aren’t effective against C. diff spores. Additionally, hospitals are failing to identify patients hit by C. diff. One patient lost 55 pounds in four moths as antibiotics failed to control her diarrhea from C. diff. To read the full story, click here.

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