S.African hospital reports 'superbug' outbreak

October 17, 2011

A South African outbreak of a multi-drug resistant "superbug" has been contained after it infected nine patients of whom three were still in quarantine, a hospital group said Monday.

Two patients infected with the NDM-1 (New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase 1) died but are suffering from other , said Joy Cleghorn, risk manager at Life Healthcare.

"Four have been discharged and three remain isolated," she told AFP about the patients at the hospital east of Johannesburg.

The NDM-1, first detected in 2009, is a gene that enables some types of bacteria to be highly resistant to almost all antibiotics.

Only two other cases have been recently reported in South Africa.

"Around the same period, one month ago, there has been an in a public hospital of Johannesburg," said Cleghorn.

The patients at the private Life Glynnwood Hospital, in Benoni east of Johannesburg, had not travelled to India and the illness was "a secondary contact", she said.

The first African infections were reported in Kenya and they have also been found around the world including in Australia, Britain, Japan and the United States.

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