Daisy Hill pseudomonas baby discharged from hospital

January 31, 2012

By Christine Keighery

Reports emerged from the Public Health Agency recently confirmed that traces of the potentially deadly bacteria Pseudomonas had been found on the skin of an infant in Daisy Hill hospital’s neo-natal unit.

The baby, who had been transferred from the neo-natal unit in the Royal Jubilee Hospital, Belfast, was confirmed as colonised and remained in isolation until being discharged, free from infection, late last week.

Pseudomonas bacteria found on the skin does not cause any problems in itself, only becoming harmful when if it breaks through the skin and gets through to mucus membranes, into the lungs and bloodstream, where it can cause infections in the chest, blood and urinary tract. It was this infection which proved fatal for three babies diagnosed at the Royal Jubilee neo-natal facility in recent weeks.

The news that a potential case had been discovered in Daisy Hill caused concern amongst mothers in the locality due to give birth, as well as those with babies in the unit. However, both the Southern Trust and the Public Health Agency confirmed with The Examiner on Friday, that the infant had been discharged after being kept in isolation and infants requiring care in the neo-natal unit will not be exposed to risk.

The baby in Daisy Hill was one of three infants within the Southern Trust’s neo-natal service to have tested positive for pseudomonas on their skin.

In a statement the Trust said all three babies were being monitored closely and moved to reassure the public.

“Having this bug on the skin is not affecting the health of these babies and all are being closely monitored. The Southern Trust has no babies with the pseudomonas infection in either of its neo-natal units, however, as a precautionary measure all babies are being screened.

“We can reassure parents that the service is operating as usual and they should not be concerned if their babies need neonatal care.  All necessary infection prevention and control precautions are being taken and in line with normal practice, we will continue to isolate all babies transferred from other Trusts until we are reassured that they are free from infection.

Southern Trust hospitals continue to have some of the lowest rates of infection in the UK,” the statement added.