Information for patients
This leaflet can be made available in other formats including large print, CD and Braille and in languages other than English, upon request.
What are multi-resistant bacteria?
Bacteria or germs are found on everyone, both inside and outside the body. Multi-resistant bacteria are germs that do not respond to some of the antibiotics commonly used to treat infection. They are often found living naturally in the digestive system (gut). ‘Multi-resistant gram-negative bacteria’ is a term covering many different bacteria but does not include MRSA. Some of these bacteria are also known as:
- Extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) producing bacteria
- Amp C beta-lactamase enzyme producing bacteria (shortened to Amp C producer)
- Carbapenemase-producing enterobacteriales (shortened to CPE).
Who could MRGNB affect?
These bacteria are most common in patients who have had a lot of antibiotics or have a low resistance to infection.
How can MRGNB affect me?
These bacteria can be found anywhere on or in your body without causing illness; this is called colonisation. Infections caused by these bacteria can cause the same symptoms as any other bacteria, such as a urine or wound infection, blood poisoning (sepsis) or pneumonia. Your doctor will decide if you need treatment.
How is it spread?
MRGNB are usually spread by direct contact, such as touch or contact with contaminated objects. They can also be spread from another part of your own body.
How can the spread of MRGNB be controlled?
Hospitals try to prevent the spread of MRGNB from patient to patient. This may be done by separating a patient with MRGNB from other patients. Careful washing and drying of hands, by both staff and visitors, or the use of hand gel, helps to reduce the spread of these infections. Hospital staff involved in your care will wear gloves, a plastic apron and in some cases a face mask while in your room, to reduce the risk of spreading bacteria to other patients.
What about the environment?
The hospital domestic (cleaning) team work closely with ward staff to make sure our hospitals are as clean as possible. Your hospital room will be cleaned every day and equipment will be cleaned between each patient’s use.
What will happen if I have MRGNB?
Being resistant to multiple antibiotics can make these bacteria harder to treat. If specimens such as urine, blood, sputum (phlegm) or a wound swab sent to the laboratory show you have MRGNB your doctor will decide which antibiotic is best to treat it, if needed.
Following advice from the Infection Prevention and Control Team your nurses may take further specimens from you to see if any antibiotic treatment has worked.
If I have MRGNB will I be able to have visitors?
Yes. It is safe for healthy family members and friends to visit you. Physical contact such as touching, hugging and kissing is OK, but visitors must remember to wash their hands or use hand gel on entering and leaving your room and to put on an apron. Your visitors do not need to wear gloves unless they are helping you with personal care such as washing.
Will it affect my discharge from hospital?
No, as soon as you are well enough you can be discharged.
Will anything I use need special cleaning?
All household and personal items, such as clothing, should be washed and cleaned as normal.
What happens when I go home?
The presence of MRGNB should not affect you or your family at home. Normal bathing or showering and household cleaning is all that is needed.
If you have any questions or worries please talk to one of your doctors or nurses. They can arrange for you to speak with an Infection Prevention and Control Nurse.
University Hospital of North Tees
Infection Prevention and Control Department
Monday – Friday
8.30am – 4.30pm
Telephone: 01642 383280
Comments, concerns, compliments or complaints
Patient Experience Team (PET)
We are continually trying to improve the services we provide. We want to know what we’re doing well or if there’s anything which we can improve, that’s why the Patient Experience Team (PET) is here to help. Our Patient Experience Team is here to try to resolve your concerns as quickly as possible. The office is based on the ground floor at the University Hospital of North Tees if you wish to discuss concerns in person. If you would like to contact or request a copy of our PET leaflet, please contact:
Telephone: 01642 624719
Freephone: 0800 092 0084
Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 9:30am to 4:00pm
Email: [email protected]
Out of hours
Out of hours if you wish to speak to a senior member of Trust staff, please contact the hospital switchboard who will bleep the appropriate person.
Telephone: 01642 617617
Data protection and use of patient information
The Trust has developed Data Protection policies in accordance with Data Protection Legislation (UK General Data Protection Regulations and Data Protection Act 2018) and the Freedom of Information Act 2000. All of our staff respect these policies and confidentiality is adhered to at all times. If you require further information on how we process your information please see our Privacy Notices.
Telephone: 01642 383551
Email: [email protected]Privacy Notices
This leaflet has been produced in partnership with patients and carers. All patient leaflets are regularly reviewed, and any suggestions you have as to how it may be improved are extremely valuable. Please write to the Clinical Governance team, North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust, University Hospital of North Tees, TS19 8PE or:
Email: [email protected]
Leaflet Reference: PIL1068
Date for Review: 08/02/2026