Superbug detected in several patients at Kilkenny hospital

GEMS ward closed to new admissions at St Luke's Hospital

Sam Matthews


Sam Matthews


St Luke's General Hospital, Kilkenny.

St Luke's General Hospital, Kilkenny

A ward for older people at St Luke’s Hospital has been closed to new admissions due to the outbreak of an antibiotic-resistant ‘superbug’.

A number of patients with Carpbepenemase Producing Enterobacterales (CPE) were identified at the local hospital in recent days. As a result, the Geriatric Emergency Medicine Service (GEMS) ward was closed to new admissions, while full infection prevention and control precautions were put in place in line with the national guidelines.

The Ireland East Hospital Group (IEHG) has said that St Luke’s has fully implemented the National HCAI AMR Taskforce recommendations for screening to detect patients with CPE.

“These patients were identified due to implementation of the national CPE screening programme,” said a spokesperson.

“The infection prevention and control team continue to work with staff to ensure best practice is followed in line with Hospital Infection Control Policy and national best practice guidelines for management of CPE.”

"The Infection Prevention and Control Team has an ongoing surveillance programme for identifying patients colonised or infected with resistant micro-organisms.  The surveillance programme was successful in identifying the patients, above, allowing for prompt action by the infection control team and ward staff in line with Hospital Infection Control Policy and national and international best practice guidelines in this area. Incidents and trends in infections are monitored and discussed on a monthly basis at the Hospital’s Quality and Patient Safety Committee and at IEHG Group level."

Last week, the IEHG issued a statement saying that St Luke’s was extremely busy, and advising people to visit only where necessary.