Antibiotic use aids MRSA spread in hospital and infection control measures do little to prevent it, says hospital study

The use of a commonly prescribed antibiotic is a major contributor to the spread of infection in hospitals by the ‘superbug’ MRSA, according to new research. The study also found that increasing measures to prevent infection – such as improved hygiene and hand washing – appeared to have only a small effect on reducing MRSA infection rates during the period studied.

MRSA – methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus – is a bacteria that causes hospital-acquired infection and is resistant to all of the penicillin-type antibiotics frequently used in hospitals to prevent and treat infection. It can cause serious infections of the skin, blood, lungs and bones.

Leading health policy expert to discuss NHS changes at London healthcare conference

One of the country’s top health policy experts will discuss what lessons can be learned from the NHS reforms with academics and professionals at a healthcare conference at St George’s, University of London this week.

Nick Timmins, senior fellow in health policy at The King’s Fund and former public policy editor of The Financial Times, will be keynote speaker at the annual conference of the South West London Academic Health and Social Care System (SW London System). The conference will take place at St George’s – where the SW London System is based – on Thursday 20 September.

All oar nothing for university boat club in hospital charity Thames epic

Student rowers from St George’s, University of London have today launched an epic 140-mile mission down the River Thames to raise charity cash. And they have already made almost £5,000, which will be donated to St George’s Hospital Charity.

The mammoth row will take the team – part of the university’s boat club – from the Cotswolds to Putney over five days from 16-20 August. They are aiming to raise £10,000 for the charity to fund a new ventilator – a machine that helps patients with cardiac problems breath more easily.

St George’s academic awarded prestigious fellowship

Dr Jo Brown, head of clinical communication in medical education at St George’s, has today (26 July 2012) been named a recipient of one of 55 National Teaching Fellowships – worth £10,000 – in recognition of her contribution to higher education.

National Teaching Fellowships, which are granted by the Higher Education Academy, recognise excellence in higher education teaching and support for learning, and are awarded to academic staff across higher education institutions in England, Northern Ireland and Wales.

Researchers win top international award for one of the year’s best endocrinology papers

A team of St George’s, University of London researchers has won an award from a prestigious international endocrinology journal for publishing one of the best papers of the year. The study could pave the way for better treatment of women whose fertility has been affected by polycystic ovary syndrome.

The researchers – Dr Suman Rice, Dr Laura Pellatt, Stacey Bryan, Professor Saffron Whitehead and Professor Helen Mason – won an International Award for Publishing Excellence from The Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism (JCEM). The award was given to each of the top 14 papers published in JCEM in 2011. Professor Mason collected the award on behalf of the team at The Endocrine Society’s annual awards dinner in Houston in June.