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Dress code bid to tackle superbug


Strict dress code regulations have been imposed on healthcare staff in Northern Ireland in a bid to reduce the risk of another superbug outbreak.

Doctors and nurses in the province must now adhere to stringent new rules regarding their clothes both inside and outside hospitals.

Among the restrictions is a ban on long sleeve shirts and a recommendation that all staff change out of their uniforms before they leave work.

The move comes after a recent Clostridium difficile (C difficile) outbreak was linked to the deaths of 36 patients in the Northern Trust area.

The measures were outlined as the make up of a panel of experts who have been asked to investigate the C difficile outbreak was confirmed.

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The independent review team from the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) will be made up of four infection control specialists from around the UK.

Health minister Michael McGimpsey, who announced a £9m package of additional hygiene measures in the wake of the outbreak, has said he may initiate a full public inquiry into the deaths once the review has been completed.

Mr McGimpsey said: “We can never fully eradicate infections such as c-diff and MRSA from our hospitals but by acting responsibly we can all make a real difference. It is important that the public has confidence in the health service.”

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Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority

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