Vancouver Hospital Declares Another C. diff Outbreak

The Nanaimo Daily News is reporting that another outbreak of Clostridium difficile has been identified by the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital. According to a news posting on National Post.com, "VIHAs infection prevention and control program reported that the outbreak is contained to the sixth floor of the hospital, the medical surgical unit. Only four patients are currently confirmed to have C. difficile, but declaring the outbreak early enables the VIHA to swiftly bring sufficient resources to bear in order to contain it, said Shannon Marshall, VIHA spokeswoman."

The report quotes Dr. Martin Wale, executive medical director for the VIHA IPC, as noting, ""We are taking this very seriously and monitoring the situation carefully. Enhanced infection control processes have already been put in place, including stepped up surveillance and monitoring, increased cleaning, contact precautions for care providers and placing patients with C. difficile in single rooms or cohort patients in semi-private rooms to prevent transmission."

A previous C. difficile outbreak at the hospital ended last summer, with a total of 49 hospital-acquired cases. The previous outbreak was attributed to inadequate housekeeping, but Marshall says the current outbreak has been linked to hand hygiene.

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