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Infection prevention and control

The prevention and control of infection at our hospital is our highest priority.

We have a dedicated infection prevention and control team that consists of a consultant microbiologist, a consultant nurse and specialist nurse and who can give advice and guidance on infections and how to prevent them. Our medical director is also the director of infection prevention and control.


Clinician washing hands quality standards infection control

Keeping our hospital infection free

All our in-patients have their own rooms with en-suite facilities reducing the potential for transmitting infections.

All staff are taught the value of maintaining high standards of cleanliness including:

  • cleaning their hands at the right times
  • wearing disposable gloves and aprons
  • keeping the hospital environment and medical equipment clean. Our lead nurses, sisters and managers have a particular responsibility to ensure high standards of hygiene
  • using special procedures to take care of drips, drains and catheters
  • taking great care of wounds.

Patients and visitors can help in a number of ways:

  • hand hygiene is one of the best ways of preventing infection – the hospital has hand sanitizing gel containers available
  • avoid touching wounds or any drips, drains or catheters
  • If family members or visitors are feeling unwell with colds, flu or stomach upsets, they should delay visiting the hospital until they are feeling better.


MRSA Screening Programme

To help protect patients, visitors and staff from risk of infection, we screen certain high risk patients admitted to the hospital to ensure they are free of the MRSA bacteria. 

Our policy is to screen inpatients at least 1 week in advance of their admission date. The test is simple and involves swabbing both nostrils. The specimens are then sent to our on-site laboratory for testing. The results are available within a day and those whose test shows they have MRSA bacteria the skin will be contacted and given an ointment for the nose and a body and hair wash to use for five days.

The MRSA swab result is valid for six weeks. In cases where patients are admitted to another hospital whilst waiting for surgery, the MRSA swab will have to be repeated prior to surgery.

For more information download our leaflet: MRSA suppression treatment for outpatients.

The cost of the MRSA test performed at Bupa Cromwell Hospital will be covered by the hospital, even if you see your consultant elsewhere.

If you choose to have the MRSA screening done elsewhere or though your consultant, you will be responsible for any costs. You must provide a printed laboratory report of your MRSA status to the pre-admission team at the hospital before your admission can be confirmed.

Download a leaflet which will explain our MRSA Screening Programme.


MRSA and MSSA, the difference:-

Most strains of S. aureus are sensitive to the more commonly used antibiotics, and infections can be effectively treated. Some S. aureus bacteria are more resistant. Those resistant to the antibiotic methicillin are termed methicillin-resistantStaphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and often require different types of antibiotic to treat them. Those that are sensitive to methicillin are termed methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA). MRSA and MSSA only differ in their degree of antibiotic resistance: other than that there is no real difference between them.


Clostridium difficile infection

Clostridium difficile (often referred to as C.diff) is a bacteria that can live in the bowels of adults and children.

In healthy people C .diff does not normally cause any problems, but can affect older people and people with other underlying illness. Signs and symptoms of the illness are diarrhoea, abdominal pain and sometimes fever.

BCH infection cases 2018-06

Norovirus and Influenza

Norovirus also known as the winter vomiting bug, is the most common stomach bug in the UK and it affects people of all ages.

Influenza or flu is a viral infection that affects mainly the nose, throat, bronchi and, occasionally, the lungs. Infection usually lasts for about a week, and sufferers experience high fever, aching muscles, headache, a dry cough, sore throat and rhinitis.

Most people recover within one to two weeks without requiring medical treatment. However, in the very young, the elderly, and those with other serious medical conditions, infection can lead to severe complications.

During high risk periods the hospital introduces additional infection and control measures. For everyone’s safety, anyone who has suspected flu is not admitted to the hospital.

For further information on infection control at Bupa Cromwell Hospital please email or call +44(0) 20 7460 5597.


Contact us at Bupa Cromwell Hospital IPC
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Call the Contact Centre on +44 (0)20 7460 5700

We can take your call between 8am-8pm Monday to Friday, and between 8am-2pm Saturdays.

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