THREE patients have died in Scotland after catching a new strain of hospital bug Clostridium difficile (C.diff) – the first cases of their kind in the world.
All three were treated in the same health board area and two were in one hospital at the same time.
Health Protection Scotland (HPS), which is responsible for monitoring healthcare infections, is refusing to name the health board concerned.
The patients, who were all seriously ill with other conditions, contracted C.diff ribotype 332. HPS says it is the first time people falling ill with this rare form of the bacteria has been reported anywhere in the world.
An investigation has been launched to discover how the bug might have spread from the first two patients, who were diagnosed with the infection in December and January, to the third patient.
The individual was treated in a different hospital 15 miles away in March. C.diff was a contributing factor in the third patient’s death.