Nordic School of Public Health NHV

Single-occupancy rooms in hospitals does not reduce the incidence of gastroenteritis

Press release   •   Dec 14, 2011 05:57 EST

The infection control nurse Anita Wang Børseth master's study is titled Single-occupancy rooms: an infectious disease prevention measure in hospitals? The purpose was to see if single-occupancy rooms to reduce infection. It is mapping the incidence of the infectious intestinal disease Clostrium difficile in hospitalized patients in four Norwegian hospitals between 2001-2010.
The analysis included to look into if the moving of patients from an old hospital building with a few single rooms, to a new hospital building with only single-occupancy rooms, was reducing the incidence Clostrium difficile, which can cause diarrhea.
The proportion of single rooms has increased during the study period, but this master theisis has not shown an infection preventive effect according to the occurrence of Clostrium difficile. Although no correlation between single-occupancy rooms and the spread of infection among patients could not be detected.
– But it can be possible that single-occupancy rooms facilitate improved infection prevention behaviours in health professionals, says Anita Wang Børseth.
There was great disparity in incidence between the four major Norwegian hospitals that participated in this study.
The risk of infection appears to be higher in the old hospital, although this could not be detected with statistical significance.
– The conclusion is that there must be more preventive measures, where single-occupancy rooms can be one measure to prevent the spread of infectious diarrhea says Anita Wang Børseth.


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