North District Hospital or NDH is an acute general hospital serving the population of the New Territories East Cluster. Today, a spokesperson for the hospital made the following announcement:

Acinetobacter spp./CDC
Acinetobacter spp./CDC

Four patients (aged 86 to 98) of a female medical ward have been confirmed as having Multi-drug Resistant Acinetobacter (MDRA) since February 6. One of them is an infected case and the remaining three are MDRA carriers without clinical symptoms. All patients are still hospitalised under medical surveillance and isolation with stable condition.

Acinetobacter is a bacterium which is commonly found in water and soil. It can also colonise or live in a patient without causing infection or symptoms. Acinetobacter poses very little risk to healthy people and does not cause disease most of the time. However, it may sometimes cause disease in patients with weakened immune systems. Effective antibiotics are available for treatment. Careful attention to infection control procedures, such as hand hygiene and environmental cleaning, can reduce the risk of transmission.

The following enhanced infection control measures have already been adopted:

1. Enhancing cleaning and disinfection of the ward concerned;
2. Applying stringent contact precautions, including dedicated use of clinical equipment for all patients in the ward concerned and enhanced hand hygiene;
3. Performing contact tracing and screening new patients who are admitted to the ward concerned;
4. Enhancing environmental sampling for monitoring;
5. Enhancing attention to contamination-prone procedures; and
6. Limiting visits to two people per patient during each visiting period.

The cases have been reported to the Hospital Authority Head Office and the Centre for Health Protection for necessary follow-up. The hospital will continue to closely monitor the situation of the ward.