Carbapemem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae: a lethal germ.
The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified a potentially fatal antibiotic resistant bacterium which has surfaced in over 200 U.S. hospitals and long-term care facilities. The bacterium named Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) has contributed to patient mortality in nearly 50% of individuals which become infected. CRE are in a family of more than 70 bacteria called enterobacteriaceae, including Klebsiella pneumoniae and E. coli, which are typically found in the gastro-intestinal tract.
Who is at risk?
Patients whose care requires devices such as ventilators, urinary catheters, or intravenous catheters, have a prolonged hospital stay, and patients who are taking long courses of certain antibiotics are among those at risk for CRE infections.
Implications for practice:
* The overuse of antibiotics contributes to the development of highly resistant bacteria
* CRE bacteria can transfer their antibiotic resistance to other bacteria of the same type
* Antibiotics are ineffective which leads to potentially untreatable infections
Educate your patients to:
* Inform your healthcare provider if you have been hospitalized in another facility or country
* Take antibiotics only as prescribed
* Ask all healthcare providers to wash their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub before and after touching your body
* Clean your own hands often, especially:
** Before preparing or eating food
** Before touching your eyes, nose, or mouth
** Before and after changing wound dressings or bandages or handling medical devices
** After using the bathroom
Recommended best practice:
To reduce spread of CRE bacteria, the CDC requests health-care facilities take the following preventative steps:
* Strictly enforce infection-control precautions
* Cohort patients and segregate equipment after CRE exposure
* Communicate to facilities when patients with CRE are transferred
* Safely prescribe antibiotics
For More Information: http://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/HAI/CRE/index.html
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|Title Annotation:||One Strong Voice--Clinically Speaking|
|Date:||May 1, 2013|
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