Part of Thermo Fisher Scientific
02 November 2006
Oxoid Infection Control Seminar “The Best Yet”
Microbiologists, laboratory staff and infection control professionals from around the UK, gathered recently in Crewe for the 3rd Oxoid Infection Control Seminar Day. Delegates, who attended the free-of-charge event as Oxoid’s guests, voted this year’s event “the best yet”.
During the full day seminar, delegates heard the latest thinking on many infection control matters and, during coffee and lunch, had the opportunity to network with the seminar speakers and colleagues from other hospitals.
The morning session started with a presentation by Pat Cattini, Clinical Nurse Specialist Infection Control, Kingston Hospital NHS Trust, on CJD and the implications of this disease for infection control professionals. Ms Cattini gave an introduction to the condition, described its causes and suggested ways in which infection control teams might assist in prevention of its transmission.
The development and evaluation of Oxoid’s new Chromogenic MRSA Agar was the subject of the next sessions by Alistair Brown, Senior Development Scientist at Oxoid and Ros Montgomery, Nottingham University Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC). Dr Brown described the many challenges faced by the R&D team at Oxoid in development of the new medium. Ms Montgomery explained how the evaluation of various commercially available MRSA media at QMC had led to the adoption of Oxoid Chromogenic MRSA Agar for routine use.
Arnold Fewell then gave a very honest account of the issues surrounding hospital-acquired infection from a patient’s viewpoint. Mr Fewell, who lost a leg as a result of MRSA infection, brought home to all present how MRSA can have catastrophic consequences for the patient and their families, not only through the trauma of the infection itself, but also from any subsequent legal proceedings.
Professor Chris Griffith, Head, Food Research and Consultancy Unit, University of Wales Institute, Cardiff, closed the morning session with a lecture on Environmental Monitoring and the lessons that hospitals can learn from the food industry. Professor Griffith’s talk was graphically illustrated by media headlines comparing actions and attitudes between the food industry and the NHS. Highlighting how, over the past twenty years, condemnation of unsatisfactory standards within the food industry has led to development of a range of strategies to both improve cleaning and reduce the risk of exposing consumers to pathogens, Professor Griffith went on to suggest how hospitals might benefit from a hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) programme similar to that used in the food industry.
The afternoon session was opened by Dr James Soothill, Consultant Microbiologist at Great Ormond Street Hospital. In his presentation entitled “Screening for Antibiotic Resistant Gram Negative Bacteria”, Dr Soothill described a new screening method he and colleagues have developed for carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumanii and Pseudomonas aeruginosa and speculated on whether media attention and the focus of infection control may move from MRSA onto these organisms.
Continuing the environmental monitoring theme, Professor Mike Wren, Consultant Biomedical Scientist (Microbiology), University College Hospital, London and Visiting Professor, University of Westminster gave a very informative talk on laboratory-based evidence for cleaning protocols and how these might help to eradicate healthcare-associated environmental organisms.
The afternoon session finished on a dramatic note, when solicitor Anne Reed, spoke about the legal issues surrounding hospital acquired infections. Ms Reed (who was a trained medic prior to becoming a solicitor) demonstrated how, in a case brought by a patient against a hospital, those involved in patient treatment and diagnosis might receive extremely thorough interrogation. She explained how, in representing her clients, she will look for “holes” in clinical records that demonstrate non-adherence to policies. She closed her presentation by giving delegates suggestions on best practice in their record keeping and procedures.
The next Oxoid Infection Control Seminar Day will be held in the UK on 15 May 2007. To request a place at the seminar (places will be allocated on a first come first served basis), please contact Fiona Macrae, Clinical Applications Manager, Oxoid - email: firstname.lastname@example.org stating your name, position and hospital with full contact details.