'Superbug' found in Scottish neonatal unit

Jul 27, 2006

Four premature infants at one of Scotland's leading neonatal units carried a drug-resistant type of bacteria known as MRSA, health officials said.

The infections had spread into the bodies of two of the babies at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, while the other two babies only showed the bacteria on their skin, the Scotsman newspaper reported.

The cases, from April and May, followed two previous "clusters" that had not been identified until Tuesday, the newspaper said.

Dr. Alison McCallum, director of public health for the hospital's parent company, said all the clusters were dealt with by the unit and the problem appeared to be over.

She said the outbreaks prompted a "deep clean" of the unit, which admits around 700 babies a year.

McCallum said all babies are now routinely screened for MRSA on admission, and screened again for it weekly.

MRSA, or Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is a strain of bacteria that is resistant to all penicillin. It was discovered in Britain in 1961 and is now widespread, particularly in the hospital setting, where it is commonly referred to as a "superbug."

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Restrictions lifted at British bird flu farm

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Discovery aids in fight against antifungal drug resistance

Feb 03, 2014

A University of Otago, New Zealand, research breakthrough from the Sir John Walsh Research Institute is helping pave the way for novel antifungal drugs designed to overcome the world-wide problem of growing resistance to ...

Recommended for you

Restrictions lifted at British bird flu farm

28 minutes ago

Britain on Sunday lifted all restrictions at a duck farm in northern England after last month's outbreak of H5N8 bird flu, the same strain seen in recent cases across Europe.

Recorded Ebola deaths top 7,000

23 hours ago

The worst Ebola outbreak on record has now killed more than 7,000 people, with many of the latest deaths reported in Sierra Leone, the World Health Organization said as United Nations Secretary-General Ban ...

Liberia holds Senate vote amid Ebola fears (Update)

Dec 20, 2014

Health workers manned polling stations across Liberia on Saturday as voters cast their ballots in a twice-delayed Senate election that has been criticized for its potential to spread the deadly Ebola disease.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.