West Sussex hospitals report no cases of MRSA in 2011

West Sussex's hospitals were free from MRSA in 2011, NHS officials have said.

The announcement by West Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust follows extra training for staff and more cleaning at the three hospitals it runs.

The trust is in charge of St Richard's Hospital, in Chichester, Southland's Hospital, in Shoreham-by-Sea, and Worthing Hospital.

It said it believed the cut in MRSA is due to its "zero tolerance" approach to infection.

Sheila Loveridge, infection control nurse consultant, said: "The most important time is when somebody is coming up to a patient to do anything to them.

"That is the most important point when you have to think about hygiene and cleanliness."

In 2010 there were seven cases of hospital-acquired MRSA across the trust and in 2009 there were 11 cases.

Trust chief executive Marianne Griffiths said: "Of course we cannot possibly guarantee that this run will go on forever, but we always aim to have no cases, and will continue to do so.

"To go for the whole of 2011 without any new MRSA cases speaks volumes for the standards of care at our hospitals."

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