LETTER: We are fighting MRSA - and shock tactics won’t work

Fighting for clean hospitals has been and continues to be the focus of attention for all of us, patients and staff alike, so it is commendable to read that a local councillor is also fighting the cause.

There are few people who have not heard of the super bug MRSA (methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus) and many have contracted this truly awful infection resulting in debilitating illness and loss of life.

When someone loses a loved one the devasating effects on the family and friends can’t be measured and will continue to cause emotional pain.

Our local hospitals have worked and continue to work tirelessly to reduce the number of people contracting the bug and we all hope that in the future this disease will be relegated to the super bug archives but, until then, improving the cleanliness of our hospitals will continue.

The number of cases of MRSA has dropped considerably and whilst MRSA in the blood is still prevalent, this has also been reduced due to skilled and dedicated staff especially infection control teams, housekeeping, medical and nursing staff.

The target of six per cent has been achieved and the fight to continue to reduce it further goes on.

Many of us will have MRSA but we may never know because it is not a problem unless we have a medical illness which weakens our immune system, or we have an open wound.

It becomes an even bigger problem in hospitals, prisons and nursing homes when the infection has the potential to spread more easily.

To suggest however ‘to list off those who died from MRSA and similar illnesses in staff newsletters in a shock tactic similar to the way messages are printed on cigarette packets’ is an insult to hospital staff. Do they really think we need shock tactics to realise the devastation caused by this disease?!

What concerns me more is the suggested use of even more statistics, at the expense of the bereaved, to sensationalise the topic.

Knowing the number of people who have lost their lives to MRSA does not make things better for us in the future, but they do tell us if we are getting it right. YOUR HOSPITALS ARE!

Carol Taylor

independent councillor