"New" type of a superbug found at Irish hospital, HSE warns 4 years ago

"New" type of a superbug found at Irish hospital, HSE warns

The HSE has warned that a strain of superbug CPE not usually found in the MidWest has been diagnosed at University Hospital Limerick.

In a public warning, the HSE has written: "The most recent detection of CPE at UHL concerns a type of bacteria not typically found in the MidWest. This type of CPE produces the OXA-48 enzyme and not the KPC enzyme more common in the MidWest. This type of CPE (OXA 48) is more easily spread and therefore ongoing vigilance is required to manage the situation and strict visitor restrictions are being enforced."

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The problem with illnesses such as CPE is that they are resistant to antibiotics, making them very hard to treat. 24 cases have been diagnosed since this CPE outbreak began in Limerick, and the hospital is currently caring for four active cases.

As such, visiting hours and safety precautions have been modified, and families have been advised not to bring children on visits anywhere in the hospital.

The HSE has said: "Until further notice only one visitor per patient is allowed and during visiting hours (2pm to 4pm and 6pm to 9pm) only. Members of the public are reminded not to bring children on visits anywhere in the hospital. Parents of children in Paediatrics and relatives of those in critical care are the only exceptions to this restriction."

"With high volumes continuing to present to UHL, these restrictions, while regrettable for patients and their loved ones, have been deemed necessary in the interests of patient care."

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The statement can be read in full here.