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14th Apr 2023

S.capitis outbreak recorded at Dublin’s Rotunda hospital

Kat O'Connor

The Rotunda recorded 8 cases in 2022.

The Rotunda has recorded an outbreak of antibiotic-resistant infection Staphylococcus capitis.

According to The Irish Examiner, eight babies contracted the infection at the Dublin hospital.

All eight babies were put in isolation and cared for in the neonatal ICU in 2022.

Babies were treated with “adequate spectrum of activity” at the Dublin maternity hospital. This is because s.capitis is resistant to multiple antibiotics.

But what exactly is S.capitis?

Staphylococcus capitis is a bacteria found on the skin, neck, face, and scalp.

According to Science Direct, this bacteria is a natural element of human flora. However, it can be dangerous if bacteria enter the body.

“Cross transmission” caused the outbreak at the Rotunda, but the origin of the infection is still unknown.

The problem with this bacteria infecting infants is the fact that it is resistant to multiple antibiotics. This means it is harder for staff at the hospital to treat infants affected.

The Rotunda alerted other maternity hospitals, as well as children’s hospitals following the outbreak.

They have yet to find out the origin of the infection.

However, they reviewed old samples to see if the bacterial infection was present. Following the review, four hospitals had “revealed relatedness between isolates from different hospitals”.

The Rotunda stressed that it will continue teaching staff about hand hygiene. It will also prioritise the cleaning of medical devices and incubators.

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