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How our hospitals unleashed a MRSA epidemic [Seattle]
Seattle Times ^ | 11/16/8 | Michael J. Berens and Ken Armstrong

Posted on 11/17/2008 6:34:06 PM PST by Clint Williams

MRSA, a drug-resistant germ, lurks in Washington hospitals, carried by patients and staff and fueled by inconsistent infection control. This stubborn germ is spreading here at an alarming rate, but no one has tracked these cases -- until now.
Year after year, the number of victims climbed. But even as casualties mounted -- as the germ grew stronger and spread inside hospitals-- the toll remained hidden from the public, and hospitals ignored simple steps to control the threat.

Over the past decade, the number of Washington hospital patients infected with a frightening, antibiotic-resistant germ called MRSA has skyrocketed from 141 a year to ...

...

No surprise inspections

In the past, the state health department conducted surprise inspections to ensure that hospitals adhered to health and safety codes, from patient care to building maintenance.

But in 2002, the Washington State Hospital Association issued a 28-page report: "How Regulations are Overwhelming Washington Hospitals." In it, hospital administrators claimed surprise inspections disrupted patient care.

In Olympia, lawmakers voted unanimously to eliminate surprise inspections starting in July 2004. Today, the Department of Health must provide four weeks' notice -- even the exact hour of arrival. ...

(Excerpt) Read more at seattletimes.nwsource.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; US: Washington
KEYWORDS: antibiotics; infections; mrsa; superbugs
Living in a blue state can be dangerous to your health... or worse.
1 posted on 11/17/2008 6:34:06 PM PST by Clint Williams
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To: Clint Williams

I’ve often wondered if a dedicated “clean team” that went around constantly disinfecting door knobs, bed railings and other commonly touched areas, would make a difference in combating this stuff.


2 posted on 11/17/2008 6:37:41 PM PST by FReepaholic (Diversity = .45 .357 .223 .38 ...)
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To: Clint Williams

It’s going to be even better with socialized medicine!


3 posted on 11/17/2008 6:41:11 PM PST by mockingbyrd (Sarah 2012!)
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To: Libertina; Robwin; Scutter; blasater1960; conservative cat; cherry; SatinDoll; lilycicero; ...
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Say WA? Evergreen State ping

FReepmail sionnsar if you want on or off this ping list.

Ping sionnsar if you see a Washington state related thread.

4 posted on 11/17/2008 6:41:40 PM PST by sionnsar (Iran Azadi|5yst3m 0wn3d-it's N0t Y0ur5 (SONY)|http://trad-anglican.faithweb.com/|RCongressIn2Years)
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To: Clint Williams

And I thought the mold was bad here...


5 posted on 11/17/2008 6:43:04 PM PST by dragonblustar (Once abolish the God, and the government becomes the God - G. K. Chesterton)
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To: Clint Williams
silly article.....

I've worked in hospitals my entire life....inspections are a "look good" opportunity instead of a "be good" consistency.....

administrations are so paranoid about the inspections THEMSELVES that a great deal of time is put into the "looking good" philosophy, which means looking good on PAPER.....

instead of providing much needed hands on staff, the big shots would rather hire another "consultant" to figure out how to scam the process.....

as to MRSA...hospitals did not create MRSA and it just so happens that it exists everywhere, in schools, in jails, in gyms, etc.....

we know there are people with MRSA because in the hospital we actually dare to TEST people.....I dare the school districts to do that or the jail systems.....they might find out that they carry a large number of cases and then THEY would have to deal with it... would that mean separate cells for all prisoners?....no more athletics?....

MRSA came about simply because of our over use of antibiotics, taking antibiotics carelessly and not finishing prescriptions, and it will increase because people are living longer thx to modern medicine but sadly not always living better ....eg....chronic lung disease, diabetes,heart failure, cancer, hiv.....all these people are highly susceptible to any infections.....a healthy person probably carries MRSA,doesn't always know it, and remains healthy despite it.....

6 posted on 11/17/2008 6:46:04 PM PST by cherry
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To: cherry

Yeah....all those stupid soaps (antibacterial) REALLY helped....sheesh....you are so right!


7 posted on 11/17/2008 6:50:52 PM PST by goodnesswins (CONSERVATIVES....saving America's A** whether you like it or not!)
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To: cherry

dittos to everything you said. I work in Infection Control in a hospital.


8 posted on 11/17/2008 6:51:51 PM PST by Litany (Christ conquers, Christ reigns, Christ orders.)
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To: Clint Williams

Stay out of hospitals and away from doctors. They’ll make you sick.


9 posted on 11/17/2008 6:54:12 PM PST by dhs12345
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To: FReepaholic
My step-mother contracted MRSA in a nursing home here in WA after being put there after hip surgery. She evidently got it from having to use a catheter. She was put in the nursing home in August and died the day before Christmas 2003.
10 posted on 11/17/2008 6:54:19 PM PST by Spunky ((You are free to make choices, but not free from the consequences))
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To: Clint Williams

and the angel broke the seal and unleashed palgues upon the earth...


11 posted on 11/17/2008 6:57:17 PM PST by KriegerGeist ("Cry 'Havoc' and let slip the dogs of War on Socialism")
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To: cherry
"I've worked in hospitals my entire life....inspections are a "look good" opportunity instead of a "be good" consistency....."

What you say is so true. I recently worked in a Rehab center for brain damaged people and happened to be there during a state inspection. I learned what the "real" rules were during that week. After the week and inspection was over one employee started bringing her dog to work with her again. It was very enlightening and a bit more than scary.

12 posted on 11/17/2008 6:57:20 PM PST by My hearts in London - Everett (Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't.)
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To: Clint Williams

Health care workers (doctors included) don’t always wash their hands. Until recently, they relied on antibiotics to clean up any mess that resulted from sloppy hygiene. New Hampshire started a hand washing campaign for hospitals:

Hand Hygiene Training & Competency
All new and current patient care staff members and physicians will be trained in HH and required to demonstrate competency in HH.

How sad is that! (Semmelweis is rolling in his grave...)


13 posted on 11/17/2008 6:58:55 PM PST by LibFreeOrDie (Obama promised a gold mine, but he’ll give us the shaft.)
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To: dhs12345

I’m a pediatric nurse, and I’ve seen a lot of kids come in with MRSA. Mostly cellulitis, or skin and soft tissue infections. 100% of those patients have had Community Acquired MRSA.


14 posted on 11/17/2008 7:02:16 PM PST by sunvalley
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To: FReepaholic
I was a medic in the Army. We would shoot goats and do surgery on them with no antibiotics, just good procedure and techniques. The idea was that if you did it right, you wouldn't need antibiotics. And in about half the cases, mind you these are goats, they wouldn't get any infection, even though they were put out in the pens with dressings.

Anyhow, we would bleach wash the entire OR, then wash. At the time we were also practicing how to take and grow cultures, and identify the common infectious bacteria. So we would also culture the OR. Often we couldn't get a culture.

Anyhow, hot water, elbow grease, detergent, bleach and rinsing.

I go into hospitals now and to me they are filthy, sticky. I see some schlep with a spray bottle and a dirty rag just spraying over a build up of the last spray/dirt/filth.

15 posted on 11/17/2008 7:05:15 PM PST by Leisler ("Give us the child for 8 years and it will be a Bolshevik forever. " Lenin)
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To: My hearts in London - Everett

But if inspections are surprise inspections then the dog can never show up.... presumably.
My experience with hospitals is that it is full of staff that are not even bothered with washing their own hands so forget about sterile anything else.


16 posted on 11/17/2008 7:07:57 PM PST by northernlightsII
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To: Clint Williams

I saw a very good documentary on (believe it or not) PBS about the
fight against MRSA.

Included in the show was the FIGHT a doctor had to put up in order to
convince the hospital admininstration to try a special bandage with
embedded antibiotics to fight MRSA in surgical patients.

And how he eventually convinced the hospital managers to spend a paltry
amount of money to order some of the bandages when he showed that the
hospital lost LARGE sums of $$$ for every surgical patient that got MRSA.

Here’s a link to the doctor’s webpage...for future reference.
http://www.wpahs.org/agh/im_residency/physicians/shannon.html


17 posted on 11/17/2008 7:08:49 PM PST by VOA
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To: FReepaholic

It would and does. Many hospitals have trained their cleaning staffs to be especially cognizant of MSRA and to try to disinfect everything they can think of. But one of the easiest ways to keep from spreading MSRA is for the nurses and doctors to simply wash their hands as soon as they enter the patient’s rooms and before they touch anything.


18 posted on 11/17/2008 7:09:18 PM PST by Blood of Tyrants (Obama is the Antichrist.)
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To: KriegerGeist

“and the angel broke the seal and unleashed palgues upon the earth...”

“15But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee:...

21The LORD shall make the pestilence cleave unto thee, until he have consumed thee from off the land, whither thou goest to possess it.

22The LORD shall smite thee with a consumption, and with a fever, and with an inflammation, and with an extreme burning, and with the sword, and with blasting, and with mildew; and they shall pursue thee until thou perish.

27The LORD will smite thee with the botch of Egypt, and with the emerods, and with the scab, and with the itch, whereof thou canst not be healed.”

Deuteronomy, Chapter 28


19 posted on 11/17/2008 7:11:59 PM PST by Robwin
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To: Clint Williams

bump


20 posted on 11/17/2008 7:14:23 PM PST by gibsosa
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To: FReepaholic
Its just not hospital staff. Its visitors that enter the rooms touch the patients,touch the beds then leave the rooms and touch everything else on the way out the door. Same with C-diff.
When I enter a room that's MRSA I have to gown and glove and leave everything but the blood I came in for in the room with the patient.

Our infectious disease team is working very hard to keep infections down. If they aren’t allowed to warn visitors about proper hygiene because they are afraid to violate patient confidentiality then how can you stop it from spreading?

21 posted on 11/17/2008 7:15:25 PM PST by linn37
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To: sunvalley

They swab the patients nose upon admittance for MRSA where I work.


22 posted on 11/17/2008 7:17:31 PM PST by linn37
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To: FReepaholic

We need to go back to basic, preantibiotic, Lister first principles. All surfaces should be tile, or metal or plastic, so they can REALLY be cleaned. No drapes, carpeting, cloth chairs etc etc etc ( a lot of this crap is patient driven, they like the “hotel” look, not a “hospital” look). Many hospitals have cut cleaning personnel to the bone expecting the nursing staff to do it. Thats got to stop.


23 posted on 11/17/2008 7:18:10 PM PST by Kozak (USA 7/4/1776 to 1/20/2009 Requiescat In Pace)
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To: linn37

They swab all the patients? That doesn’t even seem reasonable. How long is the patient in the hospital before results are in? Plus, I’m sure nearly all healthcare workers have colonized MRSA in their sinuses.


24 posted on 11/17/2008 7:33:45 PM PST by sunvalley
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To: Clint Williams
Silver is effective against MRSA as it is anti-microbial, no microbe can possibly build up a resistance to it.

Simply make all the doorknobs and other things commonly touched, silver-plated and the ability to spread will go way down.

25 posted on 11/17/2008 7:35:06 PM PST by ikka (Brother, you asked for it!)
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To: sunvalley

I’d have to ask how long it takes for the results but its a fairly simple procedure. They take a sterile swab,run it around the inside of your nose and then put it in a tube and send it down to the lab.


26 posted on 11/17/2008 7:38:25 PM PST by linn37
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To: Clint Williams

Nutribiotic Grapefruit Seed Extract.

Kills it.


27 posted on 11/17/2008 7:57:55 PM PST by aMorePerfectUnion ("I've got a bracelet too, Jim")
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To: Pride in the USA; Stillwaters

If you read the whole article, you’re probably going to have bad dreams tonight.


28 posted on 11/17/2008 8:02:01 PM PST by lonevoice (Ich bin ein plumber)
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To: Spunky
I'm so sorry for your loss of your mother.

My sister contracted MRSA at the VA hospital in Houston. She went in for elective surgery to remove a bunion on her foot. The VA knew thay had it in the operating room and still allowed elective surgeries. Her podiatrist said 4 of his patients contracted MRSA the week she had surgery. 2 lost their lives to it and 2 (including my sister) have had multiple amputations. My sister lost her leg and part of another foor. She will probably lose her life to this infection.

We know it came from the hospital because the CDC told us it was the same strain they found in the hospital's operating room air conditioning. They sent her a bill the other day for over $350,000 for the amputation of her leg and foot.

Does anyone here know if the VA can be sued for giving her this infection?

29 posted on 11/17/2008 8:03:48 PM PST by texgal (end no-fault divorce laws return DUE PROCESS & EQUAL PROTECTION to ALL citizens))
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To: cherry

I had heart surgery on May 4, 2007, in a Seattle hospital. They went in to remove the sack from around my heart, as well as complete a bypass, I needed 3, but my veins were toast, so I only got one. I was to be there for as much as 10 days.

I had a stroke durig surgery, contracted MRSA and spent 2 painful months fighting for my life in that hospital.

Strange as it may sound, I have very fond memories of that place and the hundreds of dedicated medical folks that took care of me. I had two— that’s ‘only two’ problems with hospital staff and both of those issues were taken care of (one nurse was transfered and an attendant was fired)—my bride is not one to upset... ;>)

After the first surgery I had a nice zipper like wound on my chest, but by the time I left, there was a ditch in my chest. The MRSA resulted in a total of 4 surgeries to my chest.

I then had home nurses for the next 3 months. I am now about 98% recovered from the stroke.

Today, I am alive,healed, happy and well. I recently turned 60 and celebrated our 36th anniversary with my beautiful bride.... we spent 2 fantastic weeks on the island of Kauai-— an absolute paradise. Next year I am going to Alask to kill fish.

I now have a 5 month old German Shepherd dog to keep me busy and I am having a ball.

So here is my take on all of this...the medical comunity screws up from time to time, but thank God they are out there. Oh, thank God for bulletproof health insurance too.... That 2 months cost a wee bit over a million bucks.

Thank you to all of you med folks, but do us all a big favor, wash your damn hands. ;>)

One more thing.... my bride, two grown children, 6 grandchildren, my dog and my fishing buddy thank you.


30 posted on 11/17/2008 8:09:43 PM PST by Gator113 ("Noli nothis permittere te terere.")
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To: texgal
Does anyone here know if the VA can be sued for giving her this infection?

Federal Tort Claims Act.

31 posted on 11/17/2008 8:14:51 PM PST by SeaHawkFan
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To: mockingbyrd
"It’s going to be even better with socialized medicine!"

You won't have to pay for the health care that will kill you. How comforting.

32 posted on 11/17/2008 8:16:03 PM PST by mass55th (Courage is being scared to death - but saddling up anyway...John Wayne)
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To: Gator113

Alask = Alaska

Well, I did say that my stroke was only 98% recovered. ;>)


33 posted on 11/17/2008 8:21:34 PM PST by Gator113 ("Noli nothis permittere te terere.")
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To: Clint Williams
In Olympia, lawmakers voted unanimously to eliminate surprise inspections

That'll work out well. I promise. Nothing can possibly go wrong.

34 posted on 11/17/2008 8:25:54 PM PST by CE2949BB (Fight.)
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To: Robwin

Well, I am glad my bride left that out, when she read from the bible for me while I was in the hospital with MRSA.


35 posted on 11/17/2008 8:26:58 PM PST by Gator113 ("Noli nothis permittere te terere.")
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To: Gator113
I didn't even notice that Alask.
Does that make me 97%?

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

36 posted on 11/17/2008 8:49:02 PM PST by vox_freedom (G K Chesterton: "If there were no God, there would be no atheists.")
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To: Clint Williams

Seriously, my son is 17 and has been hospitilized twice since the age of nine for this at 25k each complication..I can only tell ya that the alternative combat is more effective than what hospitalization will accomplish...There are many alternatives...Does’nt take a lot of research.


37 posted on 11/17/2008 8:50:04 PM PST by hope (the socialist msm result is mind-numb O-bots)
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To: vox_freedom

;>)


38 posted on 11/17/2008 8:52:32 PM PST by Gator113 ("Noli nothis permittere te terere.")
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To: aMorePerfectUnion
Nutribiotic Grapefruit Seed Extract.

One of the must-haves in our home.

39 posted on 11/17/2008 9:17:37 PM PST by Mygirlsmom (Hope is gone. Change is coming.)
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To: KriegerGeist
and the angel broke the seal and unleashed palgues upon the earth...

If that's true, why are we living longer than our fathers, grandfathers, greatgrandfathers generations?

40 posted on 11/18/2008 12:50:13 AM PST by Balding_Eagle (If America falls, darkness will cover the face of the earth for a thousand years.)
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To: sunvalley

Wouldn’t want to be in the medical field.

BTW, my Mom caught MRSA at a hospital. It contributed to her death. Nasty stuff. I doesn’t just affect your skin, either.


41 posted on 11/18/2008 5:55:43 PM PST by dhs12345
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To: cherry

Sounds as if the article is paving the way for the attorneys.

I hate these articles. We have the best health care system in the world.... the attorneys and the insurance companies are trying hard to put an end to that.


42 posted on 11/18/2008 6:23:17 PM PST by Protect the Bill of Rights (SHUT UP, Chuck)
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To: cherry

Sounds as if the article is paving the way for the attorneys.

I hate these articles. We have the best health care system in the world.... the attorneys and the insurance companies are trying hard to put an end to that.


43 posted on 11/18/2008 6:27:21 PM PST by Protect the Bill of Rights (SHUT UP, Chuck)
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To: ikka
That was a thought provoking post.

sw

44 posted on 11/18/2008 6:47:55 PM PST by spectre (Spectre's wife)
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To: aMorePerfectUnion

I’ve read a lot about intravenous Vit C for many kinds of infections and inflammation.

http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&aq=t&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1T4DKUS_enUS289US289&q=MRSA%2e+intravenous+Vit+C


45 posted on 11/18/2008 7:02:24 PM PST by Conservativegreatgrandma
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To: Blood of Tyrants

“But one of the easiest ways to keep from spreading MSRA is for the nurses and doctors to simply wash their hands as soon as they enter the patient’s rooms and before they touch anything.”

When I was in the hospital here in San Diego (Mercy) for surgery and a stay for more than 4 days, every single person that came into my room (private room) washed their hands for the required amount of time with soap before they even came over to my bed. I was impressed!


46 posted on 11/19/2008 10:27:01 AM PST by acoulterfan
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