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VIM-CRPA in West Texas: Developing a Regional Multidrug-Resistant Organism Containment Strategy for a Novel Bug

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 November 2020

Gillian Blackwell
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
Thi Dang
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
Abby Hoffman
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
Mary McConnell
Affiliation:
City of Lubbock Health Department
Katherine Wells
Affiliation:
City of Lubbock
Anna Nutt
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
Bobbiejean Garcia
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
Sandi Arnold
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
Susana Baumann
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
Enyinnaya Merengwa
Affiliation:
Texas Department of State Health Services
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Abstract

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Background: The Texas Department of State Health Services Healthcare Safety (HCS) Investigation Team began investigating a cluster of positive carbapenem-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa (CRPA) results in August 2017. These CRPA isolates contained the novel carbapenemase Verona integron-encoded metallo-β-lactamase (VIM). This cluster became an outbreak that spanned >2 years and involved multiple healthcare facilities in and around northern Texas. In response to positive results, infection control assessments were conducted, which exposed common infection control gaps including inadequate hand hygiene performance, environmental cleaning issues, and poor communication during interfacility patient transfers. As part of the ongoing investigation efforts, a regional containment strategy was developed to prevent the spread of multidrug-resistant organisms. Methods: Beginning in October 2018, the HCS Investigation Team made site visits to participating facilities every 6 months to provide targeted infection control support and hand hygiene performance and environmental cleaning observations. An initial kick-off meeting was held in February 2019 for facilities to begin collaboration on the containment strategy. This strategy became known as BOOT, an acronym meaning: Being prompt in response to positive cases, Obtaining isolates for testing, Optimizing infection prevention, and Transferring patients using a designated form. An interfacility transfer form to reduce the risk of transmission of multidrug-resistant organisms when patients are transferred between healthcare facilities was developed by a work group that consisted of the local health department, the Public Health Region healthcare-associated infections epidemiologist, and multiple healthcare facilities. Results: Facilities have increased communication with other facilities and with the health departments since the implementation of the BOOT strategy. The local health department is contacted when facilities do not receive a transfer form, and follow-up is initiated to ensure appropriate understanding and compliance. Facility handwashing rates and environmental cleaning results have improved with each visit, and access to alcohol-based hand sanitizing dispensers has increased in select facilities. Conclusions: The regional containment strategy is dynamic and ongoing, and changes are implemented as obstacles are encountered. Implementation has resulted in a successful decrease of positive VIM results in the local area by ∼50% since the first half of 2019. This program has led to greater collaboration among healthcare facilities, health departments, and a neighboring state. This investigation and its products have been used as a model for the implementation of containment strategies in other regions of Texas. The HCS Investigation Team hopes to create and implement an interfacility transfer form that can be used in healthcare facilities statewide.

Funding: None

Disclosures: None

Type
Poster Presentations
Copyright
© 2020 by The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America. All rights reserved.