MRSA and C difficile rates in Scotland have fallen and hospitals have achieved the 90 per cent compliance hand hygiene target ahead of the November deadline.

Figures published today by Health Protection Scotland show that the rate of C difficile cases between April and June this year was 7 per cent lower than the previous quarter. MRSA cases fell by 6 per cent over the quarter.

Health secretary Nicola Sturgeon said there would now be a "zero tolerance" approach for NHS boards that did not comply with hand washing regulations.

For more details, see www.hps.scot.nhs.uk