Hospital-acquired infection costs 5,000 lives and£1bn a year, a Commons public accounts committee report has found. The report said 'little effective action' had been taken in the last four years. The Department of Health announced that MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) rates have fallen by 6 per cent in the year ending in March. However, the figures also show a 5 per cent increase in rates over winter compared with summer, which the DoH said represented a seasonal fluctuation. Meanwhile, the Healthcare Commission will carry out 100 unannounced spot checks as part of a cleanliness crackdown.

-www. parliament. uk -www. dh. gov. uk -www. healthcarecommission. org. uk