Soldiers blamed for Superbug.

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by andym, Apr 10, 2008.

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  1. Ok,lets have a little story.


    One day some halfwit and overpaid cretin decided to run down the Armed Forces Medical Services.slowly but surely they all closed down,the same numbnuts had a brainwave....."I know we can use some NHS Units and staff them with Military Medical personell,this will generate revenue from the MOD and we can use the Forces Doctors to man the hospital at weekends and Bank Holidays saving even more money!!!"

    So Time marched on,Servicemen were treated in these NHS units and it looked all rosy,untill one day we went to War.As will War we had casualties,which in the good old days would have been treated in a Miltary Environment so familiar to our Servicemen.However our brave lads and lasses were treated in these NHS units to Verbal Abuse and allmanner of indignities by certain sectors of the "Community".However its all calmed down a wee bit now...........................or has it?????


    Soldiers blamed for deadly superbug


    Eight patients died from a superbug after a new strain was introduced to a hospital where soldiers injured in Iraq are treated, a freedom of information request by the BBC has revealed.
    The University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust revealed the deaths happened between 2005 and 2007.

    The MDR-AB superbug is more resistant to antibiotics than MRSA
    The T-strain of the MDR-AB superbug is believed by scientists to have been introduced to the Selly Oak site by injured soldiers.
    But the trust's medical director David Rosser has said the bug, which is still present in the hospital, is "not a significant problem".
    The bug - full name multi-resistant acienetobacter baumannii - is one of the gram negative superbugs, which is more resistant to antibiotics than gram positive superbugs like MRSA.

    Records obtained by the BBC show the bug spread rapidly in 2003 from the trauma theatres onto the trauma wards and then into the burns unit, where two children were infected.
    Doctors believe the new strain was introduced by injured soldiers flown back from Iraq because it was found on one when he was admitted to the hospital in 2004.
    The T-strain was responsible for the majority of MDR-AB infections in the hospital and is thought most likely to have led to the subsequent deaths.
    Soldiers flown in from Iraq are thought to have introduced the new strain
    The registered deaths at the hospital from the bug date from 2005 onwards after the infection spread onto the respiratory medicine wards.
    Three elderly patients with breathing problems died from the bug that year, another four patients died a year later and one died last year.
    In 2007, of the 108 patients infected with acinetobacter baumannii, 26 were from the military.

    The latest outbreak of six cases took place in the neurosurgical critical care unit last September.
    Scientists have linked the bug to returning soldiers. Dr Martin Gill, writing in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology in 2006, said it was "the T-strain that has been most strongly associated with these casualties and that has, in the United Kingdom at least, caused the most infections".
    He added: "It has been isolated from at least one soldier immediately on admission to the United Kingdom hospital, ruling out the possibility that it was acquired in that hospital."
    Dr Gill works as a microbiologist at the hospital.

    The link has also been made by doctors writing in the Lancet Infectious Diseases journal in 2006.

    Strict action plan
    The MDR-AB bug is more resistant to antibiotics than MRSA.
    Only one old antibiotic, colistin, is still effective, but it is toxic to kidneys and is becoming less effective.
    Professor Peter Hawkey, of Heartlands Hospital, Birmingham, said bugs of this type thrived in intensive care units.
    He said: "They have developed a lot of antibiotic resistance. This has become increasingly a problem particularly in intensive care and burns patients.
    "As they are very resistant, we are very limited. Sometimes we have only one, sometimes no antibiotics to treat them.
    "They also survive well in the environment."
    The University Hospital trust put in place a strict action plan investigating trauma theatres seven and eight, restricting staff movements and isolating infected patients.

    Wounded soldiers are treated at the Selly Oak site
    But the minutes of the infection control meetings show concerns that staff were not washing their hands.
    There were also concerns about beds coming up from the stores uncleaned and equipment such as bronchoscopes not being cleaned adequately.
    Staff were also using the route between adult and children's burns units as a thoroughfare, potentially spreading the infection from the soldiers to children.
    The children's burns unit is no longer based at Selly Oak.

    Death from the superbug can take many forms, such as fevers, pneumonia, meningitis and septicaemia, while patients who survive often face longer hospital stays due to the complications.
    It is difficult to control in the environment because it is airborne and can survive for long periods in dry places.
    The hospital actually removed curtains after finding that they were harbouring the bacteria.


    But Professor Tom Elliot, deputy director of the hospital, insisted the bug was easier to eradicate than MRSA.
    He added that it was still not proven that the T-strain of the bug is imported by soldiers into the hospital.
    He said MDR-AB existed long before the Iraq War and is low on the radar in terms of priorities.

    This was endorsed by the medical director David Rosser, who said: "Some of the wounded evacuated patients do come back colonised with bugs that we would not normally see in civilian practice.
    "We have a very clear idea of what these bugs are likely to be and are able to deal with it.
    "It is not a significant problem."
     
  2. Great - something else to blame the Forces for.

    SF
     
  3. And another reason for us to have our own house, surely!
     
  4. I recall being Medevaced Singapore to Haslar back in the Nineties, I had spent some time in Hospital in Singers and upon arrival in Haslar was put in an isolation ward until I had been tested negative for MRSA etc. I appreciate that most of the 'super bugs' are introduced to hospitals by visitors but if it worked back then why do they not do it now?

    Of course the other thing we could do is to have a military hospital - that way the civvys wouldn't be contaminated by us filthy service people!
     
  5. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

  6. Just a thought; perhaps they have blamed returning wounded soldiers for the outbreak so that they can then be accused of it being self inflicted!!!
     
  7. You may not remember, but when the services Medical branches were being reviewed a decision was made.

    It was to retain Haslar as the services hospital and that all tri service medical training would be carried out there, using blockhouse as accomodation and instructional areas. Thay were already in place from the submariners days.

    From this millions of pounds were spent further improving Haslar.

    Then out of the blue, it is not to happen and a new hospital will be built up the country, this then became another wing of an existing hospital.

    The story from here we all know, complet ba@@s up.

    Why the change??

    Possibly high up army and airforce saying it would be too far for their personel to travel? or Northern Labour politicians getting there way

    The one thing for sure is that many many more millions have been spent to achieve a far far inferior set up.

    As for he reason to allow our medical staff to serve in NHS hospitals to increase their knowledge, a fair point. But Haslar is a big hospital and has taken in civilian casualties and A&E in the past so the training would have remained.

    Politics and highup bad decisions within the MOD are to blame.

    Millions have been wasted and we still do not have a valid medical support system in place solely for forces personel.
     
  8. Over here, we're dealing with bacterial infections that are resistant to treatment as well. The press has also caught onto the superbug story for our guys/gals but couched it in terms that it was delaying their healing. Sofar, no one has tried to make the connections. I hope the press doesn't even think to try that. http://www.cbc.ca/canada/calgary/story/2006/02/23/ca-superbug20060223.html

    Our hospitals are rife with these superbugs and the health agencies are attempting to educate the public and staffers that about 20-30% of the population has been colonised with the bacteria (but not showing symptoms). http://www.amm.co.uk/files/factsabout/fa_mrsa.htm

    With the current state of most public hospitals, yours, ours, the USA's, and cut backs in ancilliary staff and services such as cleaners, and linen laundrying more facilities are finding the uphill battle to these bugs. Add in staff that may have questionable scrub/sterile techniques ad it's going to spread faster.

    We had an interesting time a few houses ago, apparently in the neck of the woods where we had bought the new build house, the soil was packed with a bacteria that ended up released when they excavated (as most do), This bacteria colony got into everything and turned toilets, drains, showers pink within hours after cleaning and scrubbing them. Seems that the actual bacteria was quite harmless unless one was immune compromised, had open wounds, respiratory issues or post surgery, then it created some problems. The bacteria is called Serratia marcescens. Didn't affect any of the humans in our house but it sure played havoc with an older immune compromised dog we have.

    The point is, that all forms of bacteria will have it professed that it is harmless to healthy individuals and will and can cause some problems in the injured, ill or immune compromised. personally, I think hospitals and clinics need to up their scrub and sterile field practices and start putting money back into services like cleaners and linen replacement. No need to blame soliders for that.
     
  9. A cursory search on 't net under Acinetobacter Baumannii (AB) brings hits, mainly from US sites, but there is a really interesting theory that, contrary to the popular belief that AB is a soil-dwelling spore from somewhere in the Middle East, it originates from a sterilising facility somewhere in Germany (apologies for lack of a link, but just Google it, there's a lot to plough through!).

    I believe that it is the case that no deaths have been proved to be directly attributable to AB in UK hospitals, the AB infection being a coincidental finding, despite the glorious Press's wish to blame many UK civilian deaths on Servicemen evacuated to the UK from the operational arena.

    When will these leeches start to support UK forces, which doesn't mean supporting policy makers? An article in the Wail last week about the difference between the support given to US forces by the American community, in comparison to the pitiful level of support here led me to believe that its author, Piers Morgan, isn't the total arse that I had always thought him to be!
     

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