Infection Prevention and Control

Norfolk General Hospital is dedicated to delivering the highest possible quality of care to our patients safely and effectively. One way we do this is by tracking the infection rates present in our hospital. By remaining vigilant, we are determined to keep health care-associated infections as low as possible.

Keeping you informed on how we are doing in this area is part of our commitment to a being a patient and family-centered hospital.
Our Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) experts works with all other members of the Norfolk General Hospital to ensure the safety and protection of our patients and of those working in or visiting the hospital. This work includes robust surveillance, education and collaboration with our patients, staff and visitors.

Infection Prevention and Control Safety Indicators
At NGH we are committed to providing our patients, our visitors and our staff with the highest level of health and safety. As the delivery of safe and effective patient care is a primary focus of Norfolk General Hospital, we are pleased to share our statistics concerning the rate at which Healthcare Associated Infections cases occur. By monitoring our infection rates regularly, we are able to address areas of risk and note areas to improve our prevention and control measures, minimizing future risk of spreading infection to our patients, visitors and our staff.
The information provided will be based on quarterly data (cases /patient days x 1000). These results are also reported to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MoHLTC) and the Public Health of Ontario (PHO). Listed below are some definitions that will help to describe what it is that we are monitoring.


Health Care-associated Infection – is a term relating to an infection that is acquired during the delivery of health care that was not present or incubating at the time of admission. These Include infections acquired in a hospital but appearing once discharged, which can be caused through transmission and use of antibiotics.

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA)/ Vancomycin-resistant Enteroccocus (VRE) Bacteremia – These are also known as Antibiotic-Resistant Organisms. MRSA and VRE are important bacteria that can cause a variety of types of infections in hospitalized patients. Bacteremia’s are infections where the bacteria are present in the patient’s blood and represent the most serious type of infection caused by MRSA and VRE. These bacteremias provide one measure of patient safety and quality of care and prompt hospitals to look carefully at Infection Prevention and Control practices.

C.Difficile Associated Diarrhea (CDAD) – C.Difficilie is a spore-forming bacteria that causes mild to severe diarrhea. It can be either hospital of community acquired. It is present in the environment and can colonize up to 3-5% of adults in the community without causing symptoms. C.Difficile has been a known cause of healthcare-associated diarrhea for about 30 years. It can be picked up on the hands from exposure in the environment, and can get into the stomach once the mouth is touched, or if food is handled and then swallowed. Once in the stomach, the bacteria usually will not cause any problems unless the other bowel bacteria are disturbed, which can happen when antibiotics are taken. Without the typical bacteria present, the C.Difficile bacteria multiply, producing a toxin that will cause illness. The spread of C.Difficile occurs due to inadequate environmental cleaning and poor hand hygiene by patients, visitors and staff.

Hand Hygiene Compliance – the Infection Prevention and Control team monitors our staff, visitor and patient compliance rates for hand hygiene. Everyone is encouraged to wash their hands prior to providing patient care or entering a patient environment where surfaces could be touched, after contact with bodily fluids, with aseptic procedures and after contact with the patient and/or environment. Education is given routinely to maintain performance standards.

Insert link to Incident Rates HERE


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