The Malta Independent 25 October 2014, Saturday

Libya’s injured treated in Malta during Gaddafi revolution ‘contaminated’ our hospital: Paul Pace

Malta Independent Tuesday, 29 July 2014, 09:30 Last update: about 2 months ago

Nursing union president Paul Pace said that the boat load of critically injured Libyans which were brought over to Malta to be treated at the intensive care unit within Mater Dei Hospital during the Gaddafi revolution three years ago “contaminated” the hospital.

Speaking to this newsroom, Mr Pace explained that any critically ill patients transferred from one country to the other could easily harbour many multi drug resistant bacteria and that is why screening of patients arriving from Libya to Malta is needed since the last time around Maltese patients were infected by the bacteria, including MRSA.

“Today, some Maltese patients are still suffering the consequences of what took place two years ago when they were infected by Libyan patients brought to Malta for treatment,” he said.

He said that they were struck by what is referred to as Klebsiella, a type of gram-negative bacteria that can cause different types of healthcare-associated infections, including pneumonia, bloodstream infections, wound or surgical site infections, and meningitis.

Mr Pace urged the government not to bring over injured Libyans to Malta for treatment, as is happening, since "we do not have adequate facilities and enough staff to cater for these cases".

Citing an example on how serious British authorities treated the issue three years ago, Mr Pace said that the authorities had refused a Libyan patient who had spinal injuries to be treated at a UK hospital so as not to contaminate the hospital’s wards.

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