Hospital trust infection rates tumble

MRSA and clostridium difficile infection rates have been slashed, and patient waiting time targets have been met, according to the year-end report of the hospital trust which runs Lister in Stevenage. MRSA cases have fallen from 33 in 2007/08 to 18 in 20

MRSA and clostridium difficile infection rates have been slashed, and patient waiting time targets have been met, according to the year-end report of the hospital trust which runs Lister in Stevenage.

MRSA cases have fallen from 33 in 2007/08 to 18 in 2008/09, and cases of clostridium difficile have fallen from 574 to 115.

A&E waiting times now routinely meet the national standard, with 97.9 per cent of patients seen within four hours in 2008/09.

Nick Carver, chief executive of the East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust, said: "I pay tribute to all of our staff. Every year the Trust has continued to make very real progress in meeting targets and standards. Their contribution has been exceptional."


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But the Trust is concerned at the high number of patients - 4.2 per cent in 2008/09 - experiencing delays in being discharged into their next level of care.

Mr Carver said: "Too many of our patients - especially the elderly - have to remain in hospital when they need to go on to the next stage in their care."

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He said often these patients are awaiting care packages to be put in place where they live, or for a bed in a community hospital.

"While we have worked hard in getting this part of the service right, there is still much to be done."

He said another big cause of concern for patients can be last minute cancellations for non-clinical reasons, especially when it comes to surgery. He said the new surgicentre, due to open in April 2011, will help to "enormously reduce" the number of such cancellations.

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