Healthcare Associated Infections

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a round shaped bacterium which commonly colonises the nose, respiratory tract, gut mucosa and the skin usually without causing any problems. It can also cause disease, particularly if there is an opportunity for the bacteria to enter the body, for example through broken skin or a medical procedure (including operations and intravenous lines). If these bacteria enter the body, illnesses which range from mild to life threatening may develop. C. difficile is a bacterium that can infect the bowel and cause diarrhoea. The infection most commonly affects people who have recently been treated with antibiotics and can spread by spores found within faeces. Infections can occur where many people take antibiotics and are in close contact with each other, such as hospitals and care homes.

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