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Author Topic: Help Stop Hospital Infections  (Read 3524 times)
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Elaine
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« on: August 09, 2007, 08:40:59 PM »

I have signed a petition to try to get the government to help stop hospital infections. If you are as concerned about this problem as I am, please let your voice be heard.
Over two million Americans develop hospital infections every year, and 90,000 patients die each year from these hospital infections. That's more people dying from hospital acquired infections than from homicides and auto accidents combined!

And now, a virulent "super bug" spreading in our hospitals poses a deadly risk to patients and is driving up the cost of hospital care. Most common antibiotics can't cure methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections. People who develop them while in the hospital often suffer for years with additional hospitalizations and surgeries.

Most U.S. hospitals have not yet implemented effective strategies to curb MRSA infections -- but they will if the public demands action.

Directed by your Governor, your state health department can assess each hospital's prevention program and then let the public know which hospitals are taking this deadly epidemic seriously. Sign our petition to tell your Governor to make stopping deadly hospital infections a priority!


GO HERE TO SIGN THE PETITION  http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/987031517.
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LouiseVargas
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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2007, 12:42:59 AM »

Thank you, Elaine, for bringing this to our attention.
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Peaches
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« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2007, 08:03:14 AM »

I know someone who went in for a tummy tuck and a hysterectomy and came home SIX WEEKS later with a big staph infection.  She is still being treated very aggressively by another doctor.  I smell a Med Mal suit here.

If you are being treated and you do not see the person about to treat you wash their hands, you have a right to ask them to wash their hands.  Some hospitals even have signs that say it's okay to ask because they know where the liability is. 

Thank you, Elaine.  This is a worrisome topic.
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MsVada
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« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2007, 09:18:40 PM »

Thanks for bringing up this topic.  It is very scary indeed.    I'll try and keep this short as it affected my life for many years......when my son was 8 he fell hiking and shattered both bones in his forearm.  He had to have surgery and 2 steel rods put in the bones.  After an entire summer the pins were pulled.  3 MONTHS LATER.. he was released from care.  within a couple of months we had a terrible ice storm here and lost power for 2 weeks, we ran a kerosene heater to keep pipes from freezing.  My son developed severe migrane headaches, for 7 months we went relentlessly to doctors trying to find out what was wrong....we thought it was carbon monoxide poisoning.
 It turned out to be a serious case of Inter-Osseus Osteomyelitis. That is a staph infection inside the bone marrow.

  It was horrible, we spent 5 years travelling from Maine to Mass General having bone debridements, many surgeries, PICC line IV's to clear up the problem and try and reverse the bone damage that was caused. 

Bottom line,  if you don't show obvious signs of a staph infection, like puss and swelling and open sores,  please be aware that migrane headaches are a sign of infection,  It was the ONLY symptom my son had, he never got a fever at all and it wasn't until the end of the 7 months that the arm started showing signs of infection......He came very close to losing that arm and I would never wish it on anyone to go through what I did as a Mother caring for a very sick boy.

It has been 10 years now, he's in college playing football and making up for lost time during his childhood.  Life is good for him now Smile
 
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Sam
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« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2007, 12:11:34 PM »

I know someone who went in for a tummy tuck and a hysterectomy and came home SIX WEEKS later with a big staph infection.  She is still being treated very aggressively by another doctor.  I smell a Med Mal suit here.

If you are being treated and you do not see the person about to treat you wash their hands, you have a right to ask them to wash their hands.  Some hospitals even have signs that say it's okay to ask because they know where the liability is. 

Thank you, Elaine.  This is a worrisome topic.

Ms Vada , I am so sorry you had to endure this with your son.

I do want to mention a few things here. I agree with Peaches about making sure the person who comes into treat you should wash their hands.

Next I want to mention a few other things. Staphlococcus aureus is a germ that we all carry on our body. It is not a germ caused by Hospitals other than the fact those who have had surgery  or have an open wound  now have a place for the bacteria to enter.
So ideally those who are visiting a patient should also be washing their hands if they plan on coming in contact with the patient.

Next we have this new superbug, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections. The sad thing about these, they have developed because of our overuse of antibiotics over the years. They also are now a germ common to us all even the patient.
A patient can also unknowingly infect themselves by scraching a wound as it is healing.
So please wash your own hands frequently if you have a wound or are visiting a patient with a wound.
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MsVada
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« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2007, 03:13:16 PM »

Thanks Sam

All good points you've brought up.   In my son's case, there were several factors.  There was never a recorded "timed scrub" with the povidine/iodine swabs.  They also had to go into a closet in the hall and get the xray gun machine that puts the pins through the skin into the bones.  That was never sterilized either.  The worst part for me is I saw this happening and was not educated enough to speak up and ask questions.

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bleachedblack
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« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2007, 10:30:09 PM »

There is more than just MRSA(methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus) to be afraid of in hospitals. There are other organisms out there that are resistant to antibiotic treatment.  There are places other than hospitals where organisms ie MRSA can be aquired. This is meant to educate and not frighten anyone.

Many have heard about the  strains of multidrug resistant tuberculosis. Such forms of TB are resistant to drug treatment and are most often community acquired. This organism it is believed has become resistant due to increasing virulence of the organism over time second to incomplete courses of medication. The organism has developed a mutation that allows in to be a "super-bug". TB was diagnosed, appropriate treatment ordered and then for whatever reason, maybe the person was homeless( as this is often a likely risk group for such a disease) and since the course of treatment often lasts up to year....they stop the drug. Over time, and repeated attempts to treat, gradually the organism has become drug resistant. This is the case with MRSA also. Then there is VRE Vancomycin resistant Enterococcus
                           
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bleachedblack
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« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2007, 10:48:33 PM »

Enterococcus are a normal organism of intestinal flora just as staphylococcus are a normal component of skin flora. The drug resistant super-bugs that have developed are what are not now normal.

Did you know that community acquired MRSA is becoming more and more prevalent. I would like to add that those who suffer the most from such infections are usually the weak and debilitated, the young or the elderly, or those with compromised immune systems. MRSA has been found at McDonalds. Some play grounds, ball pits, gyms, and AstroTurf areas have  been found to harbor MRSA.

Every care giver in a hospital needs to wear gloves whenever they come in contact with a patient. After contact, hands need to be washed.Many facilities provide germicidal cleansers inside and outside all patient rooms and other strategic areas and these cleansers have been found to be very effective in eliminating germs.

From personal observation I would like to also stress that anyone visiting anyone  who may be a patient in a hospital use the same cleansing methods. I have seen patients family's bring toddlers into ICU and sit them on a patients bed. I have seen mothers let children walk around rooms and fall on floors.....I have seen a baby kiss the floor in ICU.
You might ask why are infants allowed to visit? You got me.......no age limit, no limit on visiting hours (but that is a whole 'nother can of worms IMO).
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Sam
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« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2007, 02:17:17 PM »

Thank you BleachedBlack for adding to this discussion.

You have a way with words. LOL
I also was wanting to let folks know that all staph infections are not hospital aquired. So many folks hear staph infection and they think Staff

So yes folks wash your own hands if you are going to come into close contact with a person who is ill.

Do not bring sick children around those who are ill or have compromised immune systems.

Thanks also for mentioning the other superbugs that are emerging.
I was exposed to TB as a child. There was alot of it going around then. This was before all the cillins. So I am a PPD reacter and can't have the TB test and must have the chest xray instead. I hope I am never exposed to the new drug resistant form but with it being community born the chances are great for us all to be exposed.
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justinsmama
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« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2007, 10:04:18 PM »

WASH HANDS OFTEN!

While working my way through a BA and MA, I was employed in a hospital's supplies department, where I often would wash my hands both BEFORE and after using the restroom. Part of our department was decontamination of instruments and other items. Wore gloves, a protective gown, etc., but it was just so disgusting that I did not want to take any chances. That has carried over into the rest of my life. Germs are EVERYWHERE, and hand washing is crucial to not infecting oneself and others.
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Sam
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« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2007, 02:32:28 PM »

I thought I would pull this thread back to page 1.

I hope you have all been reading more or listening to your TV news about MRSA the superbug. It realy is out there in the general population and has now invaded our schools. A recent death of a high school athlete with more to come if we are not very aware and cautious.

On my noon news they gave a doctors advise on how to help protect yourself and loved ones from the bug.

1. Wash your hands frequently.
2. Keep open wounds covered.
3. Teach your children to not share health related products such as toothbrushes, soap etc.

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Peaches
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« Reply #11 on: October 20, 2007, 09:18:34 AM »

I think it is important to note that once you have washed your hands, dried them, hang on to that paper towel.  You'll need it to get the exit door. 

I'm not a big germaphobe even though I have a compromised immune system right now.  I have started watching where I put my hands.  Bathrooms doors.  Coffee pot handles. Copier buttons!  The office alone is a treasure trove of germs.  Yesterday, I was sitting at my desk listening to other people hacking and sneezing all over the office.  I'm thinking "I'm already sick here!".   

Nobody wants to burn a vacation day to stay home sick (no sick days, just days- you're either in or out so sick is the same as vacation) so they come to work sick and share their ailments with the rest of us.  Nice.  I just hang in my cube most of the time to avoid the sickies. 

I think you have to play in the dirt a little bit and not be too paranoid about life. 

I appreciate all the good technical info brought to us by our resident medical folks.  Good stuff to know for everyone!
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SarahD
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« Reply #12 on: October 24, 2007, 05:38:33 PM »

I know someone who went in for a tummy tuck and a hysterectomy and came home SIX WEEKS later with a big staph infection.  She is still being treated very aggressively by another doctor.  I smell a Med Mal suit here.

If you are being treated and you do not see the person about to treat you wash their hands, you have a right to ask them to wash their hands.  Some hospitals even have signs that say it's okay to ask because they know where the liability is. 

Thank you, Elaine.  This is a worrisome topic.

That is excellent advice about watching to see that those that care for you "wash their hands" and asking if you don't see it. 

Thank you Elaine for bringing this to everyone's attention.  It's very important.
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SarahD
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« Reply #13 on: October 24, 2007, 05:41:44 PM »

I think it is important to note that once you have washed your hands, dried them, hang on to that paper towel.  You'll need it to get the exit door. 

I'm not a big germaphobe even though I have a compromised immune system right now.  I have started watching where I put my hands.  Bathrooms doors.  Coffee pot handles. Copier buttons!  The office alone is a treasure trove of germs.  Yesterday, I was sitting at my desk listening to other people hacking and sneezing all over the office.  I'm thinking "I'm already sick here!".   

Nobody wants to burn a vacation day to stay home sick (no sick days, just days- you're either in or out so sick is the same as vacation) so they come to work sick and share their ailments with the rest of us.  Nice.  I just hang in my cube most of the time to avoid the sickies. 

I think you have to play in the dirt a little bit and not be too paranoid about life. 

I appreciate all the good technical info brought to us by our resident medical folks.  Good stuff to know for everyone!

Excellent points! Thank you.
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