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Blood poisoning on neonatal units

05 June 2014

Yesterday evening Public Health England announced that there have been 15 reported cases of blood poisoning in babies on neonatal units in England, which was caused by the bacteria Bacillus cereus. Many of the babies were premature and very vulnerable and one baby has sadly died but the others are responding to antibiotic treatment.

Investigations are ongoing but so far indications show that the cases have been strongly linked with a number of batches of a particular form of intravenous liquid called parenteral nutrition which was given to the babies. Public Health England and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency are investigating.

The news of the infection outbreak in a small number of neonatal units across London and the south east is really concerning for the families involved. This news highlights the vulnerability of special care babies and the real need for the very best care to be given across the UK. Our thoughts are with the babies and their families at this time.

Anyone who is concerned should speak to the doctors and nurses on the unit or call the Bliss helpline.


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