Big drop in C difficile cases in the over-65s

Cases of C difficile in over-65s in Scotland have reached their lowest ever level, but rates vary around the country, figures show.

Health Protection Scotland (HPS) said there were 313 cases in Scottish hospitals between October and December last year, with rates down 16 per cent on the previous quarter and the lowest since surveillance began.

But the figures showed variations around the country. The overall incidence rate for Scotland was 26.7 cases of C difficile in over-65s per 100,000 hospital bed days.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But this varied from 6.8 per 100,000 in Dumfries and Galloway to 51 in Tayside.

In total, 120 new cases of C difficile were reported in patients aged 15-64 during the same period – a rate of 34.4 cases per 100,000 bed days and a 17 per cent decrease from the previous quarter.

The report said: “The majority of NHS boards have reported decreases in their incidence rates between 2011 and 2012, which follows large declines in incidence rates since the beginning of mandatory surveillance.

“However, some NHS boards reported significant increases compared to the previous year, which is a reminder that there is scope for further reductions in C difficile infection incidence rates within Scotland.”