Infection control specialist, Cairn Care, has launched a free fact sheet to help care homes prevent the spread of dysentery.
Caused by shigella bacteria, bacillary dysentery is the most common type of dysentery in the UK. It can cause a wide range of unpleasant symptoms, including nausea or vomiting, diarrhoea that contains blood or mucus, fever and stomach cramps.
Although, the bug usually goes away within five to seven days without the need for medication, some people may need to be admitted to hospital if their symptoms become severe or their illness leads to further complications.
The shigella bacteria are spread when the faeces of an infected person are transferred into another person’s mouth. This usually happens because the infected person has not washed their hands properly after going to the toilet and then leaves infected deposits on touch points in their surroundings.
When this happens, it can spread to a lot of people very quickly if the correct infection control measures and hand hygiene practices are not put in place to prevent this. As a result, care homes are obviously high-risk environments for isolated incidents turning into full blown outbreaks.
Add to this the fact that care homes may have elderly residents whose immune systems are already compromised because of age or pre-existing conditions and the threat of a dysentery outbreak has to be taken very seriously.
Peter Binns, Managing Director of Cairn Care says: “With a 10-step plan for stopping the spread of dysentery and a visual handwashing guide, which can be printed off and displayed in key areas, this guide is invaluable reading for anyone wanting to learn about tacking this very unpleasant bug.”
To request your free fact sheet ‘Controlling dysentery in your care home’ email firstname.lastname@example.org.