HOSPITAL bosses in Worcestershire are working to cut down infection rates with a set of new cleaning machines.

Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust – the organisation which runs Worcestershire Royal Hospital, Kidderminster Hospital and Redditch’s Alexandra Hospital – has agreed to lease five hydrogen peroxide machines for use at the three sites.

Hydrogen peroxide vapour is used to eradicate microorganisms common in hospitals such as MRSA, norovirus and e-coli.

It was first used in Singapore during the SARS outbreak in 2002 and was later stocked by the American government to combat the threat of an anthrax attack.

The vapour is spread around exposed surfaces and studies have shown it can cut down the rate of infection by up to 64 per cent.

Throughout the winter a number of wards at hospitals in the county were frequently closed to visitors as a result of outbreaks of norovirus.