Fraser Health declares outbreak of C. difficile at Royal Columbian Hospital

Jul 16 2020, 9:51 am

Officials with Fraser Health have declared an outbreak of Clostridioides difficile (C. difficile) at Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster.

The health authority announced the outbreak on its website this week, but there are no details yet regarding the scope of the outbreak or the number of patients infected.

According to the CDC, C. difficile is a bacterium that causes diarrhea and colitis (an inflammation of the colon).

Symptoms of C. difficile can include:

  • Diarrhea, including loose, watery stools (poop) or frequent bowel movements for several days
  • Fever
  • Stomach tenderness or pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea

In light of the outbreak, Fraser Health is asking that any visitors to the facility “to use our hand hygiene stations when they enter and exit our facilities.”

These stations “are located at every entrance/exit in all our facilities and we ask that you use the alcohol-based hand rub so that you don’t bring any germs into the hospital, nor take any home.”

As well, Fraser Health is asking people to refrain from visiting if they have or are experiencing:

  • Vomiting or diarrhea;
  • Cough or flu-like symptoms;
  • Fever;
  • Rash.

“If you are visiting someone who is located on an outbreak unit, visitors may be limited to two people at a time,” said Fraser Health. “Please do not visit other patient rooms or common areas on the unit such as the lounge and patient kitchenette. We also recommend you don’t visit public areas in the hospital such as the cafeteria and gift shop.”

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