Interesting report in the NY Times shows that it’s not just the NHS that’s having trouble with cleanliness. MRSA killed almost 18,650 patients in the US during 2005 – a rate of about 1 per 16,000 people. In England and Wales in the same year there were 1,629 deaths related to MRSA, about 1 per 32,000 people so half the overall rate in the US (though that’s just on a bare population figure, rather than per hospital episode or anything fancy).