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Rise in c. diff cases in north Wales

Posted in: Medical Negligence 

North Wales has seen a rise in patients affected by the superbug Clostridium difficile (C. diff) over the last month, with health officials currently trying to tackle the problem.  October saw 47 cases of the superbug being reported by Betsi Cadwaladr health board (BCUHB), a figure well above the average for Wales.  BCUHB said that they are currently investigating the flaws in infection control with the assistance of Public Health Wales (PHW).

Concern surrounding this recent rise follows the terrible outbreak that occurred earlier this year at Glan Clwyd Hospital in Denbighshire.  The previous outbreak saw 96 cases of the C. diff infection and a subsequent 30 deaths.  BCUHB’s handling of the issue was greatly criticised and was one of the issues identified in an audit report by health watchdogs, which triggered many resignations among the board.  

  • Seven patients have already died over September/October in north Wales as a result of the bacterial infection
  • Despite a decline in cases over the summer, last month saw a rise to 47 cases
  • The rate of cases has risen from the all-Wales rate of 3.76 cases per 1,000 hospital admissions to 5.90 cases per 1,000 hospital admissions in north Wales in October alone
  • Public Health Wales found that at the beginning of the year 57% of C. diff patients in Wrexham died, 30% in Glan Clywd and 34% in Bangor

BCUHB and PHW are currently working together to try to tackle the issue.

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