Saving lives at the hospital: Bacterial resistant gowns

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- It's a place we go to get well, not sicker; but the numbers are staggering. One in 25 patients contracts at least one hospital-acquired infection and nearly 100,000 die every year because of it. Now, something as simple as what we wear could help save lives.

For 52 years the Youngbloods have endured life's up and downs. But a trip to the hospital for his heart became -- "A holy nightmare," explained Richard Youngblood.

Richard lost two toes to MRSA; and later, a urinary tract infection.

"And that turned out to be e-coli," said Richard's wife, Nancy Youngblood.

Then the infection C. diff struck, causing uncontrollable bouts of diarrhea.

"He would just stand up and it would just run out," Nancy explained.

Richard is one of the 2 million patients in the U.S. suffering with hospital-acquired infections each year.

That's why Baptist Health in Florida says it's the first system in the world to unveil these new bacterial resistant uniforms and gowns.

"The major purpose of this is to prevent the spread of infection," Hugh Green, President and CEO of Baptist Health told ABC30.

You can see how fluids react to the untreated side. But check out the side treated with Vestex technology.

"It rolls off the fabric itself, so if you're exposed to blood or other body fluids they will roll off first," explained Diane Raines, DNP, RN, and Chief Nursing Officer of Baptist Health.

The garments are also antimicrobial -- protecting both patients and the staff.

"You could have someone that's throwing up. You could have someone that's highly infectious," said Raines.

It's too late this time for the Youngbloods. They're hoping this is something they never have to go through again.

Research on the Vestex uniforms shows a greater than 99.99 percent reduction in the super-bug MRSA as compared to the non-protective uniforms. Hospital-acquired infections nationally result in up to $4.5 billion in additional health care expenses annually.

For more information on this report, please contact:

Deborah Circelli
Media and Public Relations Specialist
Baptist Health
(904) 202-4916

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