Health chiefs have been discussing how to stop infections spreading
The island this week held its 21st Infection Prevention and Control Conference with presentations from a number of UK healthcare professionals who specialise in the field.
The fully subscribed conference offered the island’s health and social care professionals - from both the public and private sectors - the opportunity to learn about some of the latest developments in preventing and controlling infections in care environments.
This year titled ’The Bug Stops Here’ the conference sought to act as a reminder that every care worker has an important role to play in preventing infection and increasing public confidence in care systems.
The conference was opened by the Minister for Health and Social Care, Kate Beecroft MHK, who said: ’These conferences have been well supported for over two decades, but we mustn’t rest on our laurels. It is vital we give our care professionals the time and resources to keep up to date in the global battle to prevent and fight infection in care environments - especially where such infection is avoidable.
’The challenges facing us are serious: resistance to antibiotics is on the rise and there is little development of new antibiotics globally, infection prevention and control may be our only defence.
’The passion of many care workers to tackle these challenges was palpable at the conference. I am grateful to the team who organised such an interesting event and to also to our guest speakers who travelled to the Island to share the knowledge and expertise.’
The speakers and topics were:
Dr Deb Mandal, vonsultant and lead clinician in genitourinary medicine at Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, who spoke about sexually transmitted infections and HIV
Craig Bradley, lead nurse for infection prevention and control at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, who spoke about reducing catheter associated urinary tract infections
Dr Sajjad Mirza, consultant medical microbiologist and deputy infection control doctor, at University Hospital of South Manchester NHS Foundation Trust, who spoke about the super-bug CPE (Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae)
Penny Criddle, senior infection prevention and control nurse at Devon Partnership NHS Trust and the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, who spoke about infection outbreaks in mental health environments
Martin Jones, infection prevention and control matron and Sefton Area Lead at Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust, who spoke about urinary catheters in care homes
Justine McCuaig, health protection nurse at NHS Dumfries and Galloway, who spoke about preventing the spread of flu.
A theme throughout the day was getting back to basics with measures such as: hand hygiene, regular cleaning, and decontamination of medical devices. It reflected the fact that the majority of infection prevention and control precautions are not complex or expensive, but can have a significant impact and rate of success