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Deaths from superbugs continue to fall

The number of deaths in England and Wales from MRSA and Clostridium difficile (C. diff) have continued their long-term downward trend, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics.

The figures show deaths from MRSA fell by 20% from 364 in 2011 to 292 in 2012. The number of deaths from MRSA has now fallen by more than 75% since 2008.

There were 1,646 deaths from C. diff in 2012, down from 2,053 in the previous year.

Both infections have shown large declines over the past five years after being repeatedly targeted by government policies in the face of public concern and failing antibiotics. Experts now believe the more prevalent HCAIs are E. coli, Salmonella and Pseudomonas, but these infections, too, are becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotic treatment.