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MRSA: Death

Volume 471: debated on Thursday 31 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients died as a result of (a) MRSA and (b) C. difficile in each year since 1997. (183141)

I have been asked to reply.

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 31 January 2008:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your recent question asking how many patients died as a result of (a) MRSA and (b) C. difficile in each year since 1997. (183141)

The table below provides data on the number of death certificates on which MRSA and Clostridium difficile were mentioned, from 1997 to 2005, the latest year for which figures are available.

Table 1: Number of death certificates where (a) methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus1 and (b) Clostridium difficile2 was mentioned, England and Wales, 1997 to 20053, 4

(a) MRSA

(b) Clostridium difficile

1997

389

4n/a

1998

412

4n/a

1999

487

975

2000

669

4n/a

2001

734

1,241

2002

800

1,428

2003

955

1,778

2004

1,168

2,247

2005

1,629

3,807

1 Identified using the methodology described in Griffiths C, Lamagni TL, Crowcroft NS, Duckworth G and Rooney C (2004). Trends in MRSA in England and Wales: analysis of morbidity and mortality data for 1993 to 2002. Health Statistics Quarterly 21, 15-22.

2 Identified using the methodology described in Office for National Statistics: Report: Deaths involving Clostridium difficile: England and Wales, 2001 to 2005. Health Statistics Quarterly 33, 71-75.

3 Data are for deaths occurring in each calendar year.

4 Deaths involving Clostridium difficile can only be identified using the Tenth Revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10). This has been used by ONS for coding mortality from 2001 onwards and in 1999 for a bridge coding study. Data are therefore not available for 1997, 1998 and 2000 when the Ninth Revision of the ICD was in use.