Visiting restrictions at Tallaght Hospital after superbug outbreak

The hospital says the bacteria does not pose a risk to most people

Visiting restrictions at Tallaght Hospital after superbug outbreak

Tallaght Hospital (The Adelaide and Meath Hospital) in Dublin | Image: Photocall Ireland

A doctor has told of the difficulties dealing with a superbug outbreak at a Dublin hospital.

Tallaght Hospital is restricting visiting as part of infection prevention after a number of patients tested positive for Carbapenem Resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE).

While the bacteria does not pose a risk to most people, it can be potentially deadly for vulnerable patients.

However while the bug has been present since July, restrictions have only been put in place now.

Management has imposed the following restrictions on visitors:

  • One visitor only per patient is permitted during designated visiting hours (Adult hospital visiting hours are from 2.00pm-4.00pm and 6.30pm - 8.30pm)
  • Children are not permitted to visit in any circumstances
  • Parents/Guardians of paediatric inpatients are allowed to visit as normal, as the paediatric unit is not affected

The paediatric and adult emergency departments are separate units for patients requiring emergency care.

Dr James Gray is calling for an 'education campaign' to make local doctors, other hospitals and the public aware of the situation.

"The staff in the hospital are doing trojan work here trying to deal with this at ward level", he told the Pat Kenny Show here on Newstalk.

"We've got visiting restrictions now...it is late in the day seeing as it was July when this actually first came on the scene.

"An outbreak was declared in August, and it was really middle of September before anybody outside of the hospital knew much about it".

He also likened the situation to trying to control a fire.