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To identify factors contributing to a cluster of deaths from invasive group A streptococcus (GAS) infection in a nursing home facility and to prevent additional cases.
A 146-bed nursing home facility in northern Nevada.
We defined a case as the isolation of GAS from a normally sterile site in a resident of nursing home A. To identify case patients, we reviewed resident records from nursing home A, the local hospital, and the hospital laboratory. We obtained oropharyngeal and skin lesion swabs from staff and residents to assess GAS colonization and performed emm typing on available isolates. To identify potential risk factors for transmission, we performed a cohort study and investigated concurrent illness among residents and surveyed staff regarding infection control practices.
Six residents met the case patient definition; 3 (50%) of them died. Among invasive GAS isolates available for analysis, 2 distinct strains were identified: emm11 (3 isolates) and emm89 (2 isolates). The rate of GAS carriage was 6% among residents and 4% among staff; carriage isolates were emm89 (8 isolates), emm11 (2 isolates), and emm1 (1 isolate). Concurrently, 35 (24%) of the residents developed a respiratory illness of unknown etiology; 41% of these persons died. Twenty-one (30%) of the surveyed employees did not always wash their hands before patient contacts, and 27 (38%) did not always wash their hands between patient contacts.
Concurrent respiratory illness likely contributed to an outbreak of invasive GAS infection from 2 strains in a highly susceptible population. This outbreak highlights the importance of appropriate infection control measures, including respiratory hygiene practices, in nursing home facilities.
To identify exposures associated with acute hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection among residents with diabetes in a skilled nursing facility.
Residents from Unit 3 and other skilled nursing facility residents with diabetes were tested for serologic evidence of HBV infection. Two retrospective cohort studies were conducted. Potential routes of HBV transmission were evaluated by statistical comparison of attack rates.
A 269-bed skilled nursing facility.
All skilled nursing facility residents with diabetes and skilled nursing facility residents who lived on the same unit as the index case (Unit 3) for some time during the case's incubation period.
All 5 residents with acute HBV infection had diabetes and resided in Unit 3. The attack rate among the 12 patients with diabetes in Unit 3 was 42%, compared with 0% among 43 patients without diabetes (relative risk, 37.2; 95% confidence interval, 4.7 to ∞). Acutely infected patients with diabetes received more morning insulin doses (P = .05), and more insulin doses (P = .03) and finger sticks (P = .02) on Wednesdays than did noninfected patients with diabetes. Two chronically infected patients with diabetes in Unit 3 were positive for hepatitis B e antigen and regularly received daily insulin and finger sticks. Of the 4 acute and 3 chronically infected residents from whom HBV DNA was amplified, all were genotype F and had an identical 678-bp S region sequence. Although no component of the lancets or injection devices was shared among residents, opportunities for HBV contamination of diabetes care supplies were identified.
Contamination of diabetes care supplies resulted in resident-to-resident transmission of HBV. In any setting in which diabetes care is performed, staff need to be educated regarding appropriate infection control practices.
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