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Cluster of Vancomycin Resistant Enterococci cases in Queen Elizabeth Hospital

The following is issued on behalf of the Hospital Authority:

     The spokesperson for Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) made the following announcement today (December 17):

     A 79-year-old male patient admitted to the Department of Surgery at QEH earlier due to abdominal pain was confirmed to be a Vancomycin Resistant Enterococci (VRE) carrier on December 12. In accordance with the prevailing infection control guidelines, the hospital has screened patients who had contact with the index patient. Five patients (one male and four female, aged 61 to 95) have been confirmed to be VRE carriers, all without clinical symptoms. Four of the patients are hospitalised at QEH. All are in stable condition and under medical surveillance and isolation. The other two have been discharged.

     The cases have been reported to the Hospital Authority Head Office and the Centre for Health Protection for necessary follow-up.

     The Hospital Infection Control Team, the department concerned and experts of the Centre for Health Protection had a meeting today and the following enhanced infection control measures have already been adopted:

1. All VRE carriers are being treated in isolation rooms or cohorts according to their clinical symptoms and treatment needs;
2. Visiting is limited to two people per patient during each visiting period; and
3. Stringent contact precautions have been applied, including dedicated use of clinical items to VRE carriers, enhanced hand hygiene and environmental hygiene.

     The Hospital Infection Control Team will continue to closely monitor the situation of the ward.

Ends/Monday, December 17, 2012
Issued at HKT 18:28


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