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Lawsuits Filed Over 2008 Newborn Outbreak

An October 2008 outbreak of antibiotic-resistant ESBL strain of E. coli caused the infection of 13 newly born babies at the neonatal intensive care unit at Luton and Dunstable Hospital in the United Kingdom.

Two babies died and others were left critically ill.

Last month, an official inquiry into the outbreak reported that breaches of infection control measures, including poor hand washing and failure to clean equipment caused the tragedy.

Lewis Beard, now 18 months old, survived but with permanent damage from the infection. So did Lilly Meadows, also 18 months old.  Their parents, Greg and Colette Beard, and Jennifer and Paul Meadows, are suing on behalf of their injured tots.

The official report by the Luton & Dunstable NHS Foundation Trust said possible causes of the outbreak, which lasted almost three months, was not cleaning equipment shared between the babies and staff not washing their hands properly.

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