The Zoomer Report: Single Hospital Rooms and Infection

Here’s important information if you or a loved is hospitalized. A study out of Montreal finds patients in intensive care staying in private rooms have half the rate of some hospital-acquired infections as patients in shared rooms.

Almost one in three patients in ICU pick up another bug in hospital, which means longer hospital stays, higher costs and for patients, a new bug to fight on top of the illness that put them in intensive care.

The study looked at 20,000 admissions over five years at the McGill’s ICUs before and after one was renovated, and focused on three antibiotic-resistant bacteria: MRSA, VRE and C. difficile.

Overall, the infection rate for patients cared for in private rooms was 54 per cent lower after multi-bed rooms were converted to private rooms.

There have been other studies that also suggest that single rooms are a huge plus to patient safety, whether they’re in intensive care or not. In addition to added infection control, they allow patients to sleep better and avoid issues with confidentiality.

So if you can get into a single room, it’s probably worth the extra money it’ll cost.

Photo © Jodi Jacobson

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Libby ZnaimerAbout The Zoomer Report

Libby Znaimer, a prominent Canadian journalist specializing in business, politics, and lifestyle issues, is producer and host of The Zoomer Report, a special feature on topics of interest to baby boomers and the 50+. It covers everything from health and wealth to leisure and volunteerism, from the special vantage point of the generation that has changed society in its wake.

Ms. Znaimer is also Vice-President of News and Information for Classical 96.3FM and AM740. Her first book, “In Cancerland – Living Well Is The Best Revenge” – was published in October 2007 by Key Porter.

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