Original Research

Infection and cross-infection in a Paediatric Gastro-enteritis unit

Jean Bowen Jones
Curationis | Vol 12, No 3/4 | a236 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v12i3/4.236 | © 1989 Jean Bowen Jones | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 26 September 1989 | Published: 26 September 1989

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Jean Bowen Jones, Department o f Nursing. University o f Natal, South Africa

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Abstract

A two month study to investigate the incidence o f nosocomial infection was conducted in a paediatric gastroenteritis ward o f a black academic hospital. Enteric pathogens were identified on admission in 61 (47,2%) o f 129 patients; 56 bacterial and 25 viral. Six per cent o f patients had a combination o f bacterial and viral pathogens. Enteric pathogens most frequently identified on admission were Campylobacter jejuni in 22%, Rotavirus in 19,3%, EPEC in 10,8% and Shigella spp. in 6,9% patients. Twenty six (20%) patients had more than 1 enteric pathogen. The nosocomial infection rate was recorded at 17,1%. EPEC occurred most commonly in 5,3% patients, Salmonella typhimurium in 4,6% and Shigella spp. in 2,3%. Nosocomial infections increased the mean length o f hospital stay from 7,2- 20,2 days. Contributory factors to the spread o f nosocomial infection were the unsatisfactory methods o f bathing patients and giving naso-gastric feeds.

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