Demo calls for MRSA clampdown

A DEMONSTRATION calling for more cash to tackle the MRSA crisis has been held outside two hospitals after it emerged eight people there had been struck down with the bug.

A DEMONSTRATION calling for more cash to tackle the MRSA crisis has been held outside two hospitals after it emerged eight people there had been struck down with the bug.

John Tipple, the Respect party's parliamentary candidate for Harwich, assembled a group of supporters to call for additional NHS finances to fight the problem.

Around 15 adults and a number of children joined the protest, which was greeted with waves and the sound of car horns from passing motorists.

The demonstration was called in response to news that there were eight people with MRSA in Harwich and Clacton hospitals, of which six had been transferred from Colchester General Hospital.


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Addressing the group, Mr Tipple said: "Most people agree with the Respect position that this Government should be spending money on welfare not warfare.

"Billions of pounds on war, but under-funding and MRSA in our hospitals. That is the truth this Government and our MP want to hide.

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"That is why people should vote for Respect in this election."

Later he said: "We were very pleased to have 20 people out demonstrating at a moments notice.

"While MRSA is a complicated business, it is striking people down for want of a clean hospital."

A spokesman for Tendring Primary Care Trust said the demonstrators had protested briefly before leaving.

"There was no trouble and they didn't want to speak to anybody," he said.

He added that there was no reason for people to be concerned and that the figure of eight MRSA patients was not particularly high.

A spokesman for Essex Rivers Healthcare NHS Trust said four of the eight patients had had their MRSA status confirmed at Colchester General Hospital (CGH) before being moved to the coastal hospitals, which had been fully aware of the clinical position. They may have picked up the bug from CGH or in the wider community, he said.

Two were patients transferred from CGH who were later identified as having the superbug, one had transferred directly to Clacton from Barking Hospital and another had been identified as having MRSA when he entered CGH. He was later transferred to Tendring PCT who were fully aware of his condition, the spokesman added.

"The notion that Essex Rivers Healthcare is knowingly transferring patients to the coastal hospitals without warning them is nonsense.

"Appropriate clinical measures have been taken at both Clacton and Harwich Hospitals," he added.

n Also standing in the Harwich constituency in the forthcoming General Election are Douglas Carswell (Conservative), Ivan Henderson (Labour), Jeffrey Titford (UKIP) and Keith Tully (Liberal Democrat).

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