C. difficile

C. difficile Associated Disease (CDAD) Rate Reporting

C. difficile is one of the many types of bacteria that can be found in feces (bowel movement), and has been a known cause of health care-associated diarrhea for about 30 years.Learn more about C. difficile.

STEGH posts its infection rates online on a monthly basis with new information posted on our site, and on the Ministry’s website, on the last day of every month. Public reporting of our hospital’s C. difficile rates allows us to establish a baseline and track our rates over time. Tracking our rates allows us to review our internal processes, identify areas for improvement, areas of success and implement strategies to reduce the incidence of C. difficile.

Jump to a section below:

STEGH C.difficile Rates as Reported to the Ministry

2021

Date
# of new cases of C. difficile
C. difficile Rate
August 2021
0
0.00
July 2021
1
0.27
June 2021
0
0.00
May 2021
0
0.00
April 2021
0
0.00
March 2021
1
0.26
February 2021
1
0.30
January 2021
0
0.00

Definitions

The C. difficile infection rate is calculated as a rate per 1,000 patient days. The "total patient days" represents the sum of the number of days during which services were provided to all inpatients during the given time period.

The rate is calculated as follows:

Number of new hospital acquired cases of C. difficile in our facility x 1000

Total number of patient days (for one month)

Sometimes when patients are admitted to the hospital, they can get infections. These are called hospital-acquired infections. In the case of C. difficile, this may mean that symptoms began 72 hours after admission to the hospital; or that the infection was present at the time of admission but was related to a previous admission to that hospital within the last four weeks.

All Ontario hospitals now report their C. difficile rates monthly. At any point in time, it is not unusual for STEGH, or any other hospital in the country to report the presence of C. difficile in their facility. At STEGH, we continue to monitor all cases of C. difficile in our Hospital and we have numerous infection control processes [link to infection control] in place to minimize the risk of infection spreading to other patients. We continue to work together to reduce all hospital acquired infections, including C. difficile.

Visit the Ministry of Health Care and Long-Term Care website to view other hospital's rates.

If you have any questions about this information or about our hospital’s infection prevention and control program, please contact us.

Infection Rate per 1,000 Patient Days

The C. difficile infection rate is calculated as a rate per 1,000 patient days. The "total patient days" represents the sum of the number of days during which services were provided to all inpatients during the given time period.

The rate is calculated as follows:

Number of new hospital acquired cases of C. difficile in our facility x 1000

Total number of patient days (for one month)

What are hospital-acquired cases?

Sometimes when patients are admitted to the hospital, they can get infections. These are called hospital-acquired infections. In the case of C. difficile, this may mean that symptoms began 72 hours after admission to the hospital; or that the infection was present at the time of admission but was related to a previous admission to that hospital within the last four weeks.

All Ontario hospitals now report their C. difficile rates monthly. At any point in time, it is not unusual for STEGH, or any other hospital in the country to report the presence of C. difficile in their facility. At STEGH, we continue to monitor all cases of C. difficile in our Hospital and we have numerous infection control processes [link to infection control] in place to minimize the risk of infection spreading to other patients. We continue to work together to reduce all hospital acquired infections, including C. difficile.

Visit the Ministry of Health Care and Long-Term Care website to view other hospital's rates.

If you have any questions about this information or about our hospital’s infection prevention and control program, please contact us.

FAQ

C. difficile is one of the many types of bacteria that can be found in feces (bowel movement), and has been a known cause of health care-associated diarrhea for about 30 years.

C. difficile is not new. Although people may lately associate it with health care settings, it doesn’t come from hospitals, long-term care homes or laboratories. It is widely distributed in the environment and can be found in the human intestine, occurring naturally in 3-5% of adults (more commonly in the elderly) without causing symptoms.

C. difficile 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. The use of antibiotics increases the chances of developing C. difficile diarrhea as it alters the normal level of good bacteria found in the intestines and colon. Without the presence of the normal bowel bacteria, the C. difficile bacteria may start to grow and produce a toxin that can damage the bowel and lead to watery diarrhea, fever and abdominal pain or tenderness.

A sample of liquid stool is collected when it is occurring frequently and is not normal for the patient. This sample will be sent to the lab for the appropriate testing.

Treatment depends on how sick you are. People with mild symptoms may not need treatment. For more severe disease, antibiotics are required. If you are in the hospital and have C. difficile diarrhea, you will be put on precautions until you are free from diarrhea for at least two days. Your activities outside the room may be restricted. All health care staff, family and visitors who enter your room will wear a gown and gloves. Everyone MUST clean their hands upon entering and when leaving your room.

When a person has C. difficile, the bacteria in their feces can contaminate surfaces such as toilets, bedpans, commode chairs, and door handles (if feces is on hands). Other healthy individuals can contaminate their hands if they touch these items. If these individuals then touch their mouths without washing their hands, they can become infected. C. difficile produces spores that survive for long periods and are resistant to destruction by many environmental factors (e.g. temperature, humidity).

Hand hygiene: everyone’s responsibility

Good hand washing by everyone, healthcare staff, physicians, volunteers, patients and visitors, is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of infectious diseases like C. difficile. In addition to staff following standards as identified within our internal C. difficile procedure and it is very important that we prompt or ‘cue’ each other in order to remind ourselves to use personal protective equipment (PPE) and perform hand hygiene.

Prevention & Control

Unfortunately, like many hospitals in Ontario our size, on any given day, STEGH likely has patients in isolation with infectious diseases such as C. difficile. Our focus on patient and staff safety includes a concerted effort in preventing and managing C. difficile in this facility.

The STEGH Infection Control Committee has supported and recommended a number of strategies to minimize risk as outlined in our policies and procedures.

STEGH uses multiple controls to prevent the spread of C. difficile, which includes but is not limited to:

  • Hand hygiene facilitation: Alcohol based hand rub (ABHR) has been strategically placed at Point of Care within the patient’s environment so that all care providers can easily access it. STEGH participated in the MOHLTC Just Clean Your Hands pilot and continues to emphasize hand hygiene practice as one of the key components to prevent spread.
  • Education: STEGH staff has been educated on the procedure for managing C. difficile which is based on the Provincial Infectious Disease Advisory Committee’s (PIDAC) C. difficile Best Practice Guidelines. Infection Control practices are audited on a regular basis.
  • Use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): The use of PPE (gown, and gloves) is required by all who enter the patient environment.
  • Isolation requirements: Our control measures include appropriate patient placement. Patients with diarrhea will have ‘Enhanced Contact’ isolation signage posted outside their room that reviews all necessary instructions that must be followed by all as they enter and exit the patient room. The isolation signage provides a visible communication tool that prompts enhanced environmental cleaning.
  • Tracking Patient Care Needs: The health care team reviews each patient with C. difficile symptoms daily, to determine the patient’s response to treatment and to alter care as required.
  • Environmental cleaning is ongoing using recommended germicides.

- STEGH conducts twice-daily room cleaning for patients requiring Enhanced Contact Precautions.
- A new sporacidal agent is part of the new cleaning practices. This cleaner is used to clean all components of the patient environment.
- Our cleaning staff is well trained and is dedicated to keeping our hospital clean and safe for our patients.

  • Ongoing audits of the management of C. difficile.

C. difficile Associated Disease (CDAD) Rate Reporting

C. difficile is one of the many types of bacteria that can be found in feces (bowel movement), and has been a known cause of health care-associated diarrhea for about 30 years.Learn more about C. difficile.

STEGH posts its infection rates online on a monthly basis with new information posted on our site, and on the Ministry’s website, on the last day of every month. Public reporting of our hospital’s C. difficile rates allows us to establish a baseline and track our rates over time. Tracking our rates allows us to review our internal processes, identify areas for improvement, areas of success and implement strategies to reduce the incidence of C. difficile.

STEGH C.difficile Rates as Reported to the Ministry

October 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
September 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
August 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.27
July 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
June 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
May 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
April 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
March 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
February 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
January 2020
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
November 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
October 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
September 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
August 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
July 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.54
June 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
May 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.23
April 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
March 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
February 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
January 2019
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.45
December 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.23
November 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.5
October 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.24
September 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
August 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.55
July 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
June 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.25
May 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
April 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
March 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.46
February 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
January 2018
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.22
December 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.23
November 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.47
October 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
September 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.24
August 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.25
July 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.24
June 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.28
May 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
April 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
March 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.24
February 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
January 2017
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.52
December 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
November 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00

 

 

October 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
September 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
August 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0.00
July 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.50
June 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.57

 

May 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.28

 

 

April 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.26
March 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.25
February 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile <1
C. difficile Rate 0.26
January 2016
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.93

 

 

December 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.24

 

November 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.51
October 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <
C. difficile Rate 0.00

 

September 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.26
August 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.57
July 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.53
June 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.26
May 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.51
April 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.82
March 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.55
February 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <0
C. difficile Rate 0.00

 

January 2015
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.48
December 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.50
November 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.26
October 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.88
September 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.62
August 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.28
July 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.30
June 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0
May 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0
April 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0
March 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.85
Feb 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.29
Jan 2014
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0
Dec 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.29
Nov 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.33
Oct 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.33
Sept 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0
August 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.31
July 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0
June 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile 0
C. difficile Rate 0
May 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.29
April 2013
# of new cases of C. difficile <5
C. difficile Rate 0.29

 

Infection Rate per 1,000 Patient Days

The C. difficile infection rate is calculated as a rate per 1,000 patient days. The "total patient days" represents the sum of the number of days during which services were provided to all inpatients during the given time period.

The rate is calculated as follows:

Number of new hospital acquired cases of C. difficile in our facility x 1000

Total number of patient days (for one month)

What are hospital-acquired cases?

Sometimes when patients are admitted to the hospital, they can get infections. These are called hospital-acquired infections. In the case of C. difficile, this may mean that symptoms began 72 hours after admission to the hospital; or that the infection was present at the time of admission but was related to a previous admission to that hospital within the last four weeks.

All Ontario hospitals now report their C. difficile rates monthly. At any point in time, it is not unusual for STEGH, or any other hospital in the country to report the presence of C. difficile in their facility. At STEGH, we continue to monitor all cases of C. difficile in our Hospital and we have numerous infection control processes [link to infection control] in place to minimize the risk of infection spreading to other patients. We continue to work together to reduce all hospital acquired infections, including C. difficile.

Visit the Ministry of Health Care and Long-Term Care website to view other hospital's rates.

If you have any questions about this information or about our hospital’s infection prevention and control program, please contact us.