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Severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) transmissions among healthcare workers and hospitalized patients are challenging to confirm. Investigation of infected persons often reveals multiple potential risk factors for viral acquisition. We combined exposure investigation with genomic analysis confirming 2 hospital-based clusters. Prolonged close contact with unmasked, unrecognized infectious, individuals was a common risk.
To assess preventability of hospital-onset bacteremia and fungemia (HOB), we developed and evaluated a structured rating guide accounting for intrinsic patient and extrinsic healthcare-related risks.
HOB preventability rating guide was compared against a reference standard expert panel.
A 10-member panel of clinical experts was assembled as the standard of preventability assessment, and 2 physician reviewers applied the rating guide for comparison.
The expert panel independently rated 82 hypothetical HOB scenarios using a 6-point Likert scale collapsed into 3 categories: preventable, uncertain, or not preventable. Consensus was defined as concurrence on the same category among ≥70% experts. Scenarios without consensus were deliberated and followed by a second round of rating.
Two reviewers independently applied the rating guide to adjudicate the same 82 scenarios in 2 rounds, with interim revisions. Interrater reliability was evaluated using the κ (kappa) statistic.
Expert panel consensus criteria were met for 52 scenarios (63%) after 2 rounds.
After 2 rounds, guide-based rating matched expert panel consensus in 40 of 52 (77%) and 39 of 52 (75%) cases for reviewers 1 and 2, respectively. Agreement rates between the 2 reviewers were 84% overall (κ, 0.76; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.64–0.88]) and 87% (κ, 0.79; 95% CI, 0.65–0.94) for the 52 scenarios with expert consensus.
Preventability ratings of HOB scenarios by 2 reviewers using a rating guide matched expert consensus in most cases with moderately high interreviewer reliability. Although diversity of expert opinions and uncertainty of preventability merit further exploration, this is a step toward standardized assessment of HOB preventability.
Background: With the emergence of antibiotic resistant threats and the need for appropriate antibiotic use, laboratory microbiology information is important to guide clinical decision making in nursing homes, where access to such data can be limited. Susceptibility data are necessary to inform antibiotic selection and to monitor changes in resistance patterns over time. To contribute to existing data that describe antibiotic resistance among nursing home residents, we summarized antibiotic susceptibility data from organisms commonly isolated from urine cultures collected as part of the CDC multistate, Emerging Infections Program (EIP) nursing home prevalence survey. Methods: In 2017, urine culture and antibiotic susceptibility data for selected organisms were retrospectively collected from nursing home residents’ medical records by trained EIP staff. Urine culture results reported as negative (no growth) or contaminated were excluded. Susceptibility results were recorded as susceptible, non-susceptible (resistant or intermediate), or not tested. The pooled mean percentage tested and percentage non-susceptible were calculated for selected antibiotic agents and classes using available data. Susceptibility data were analyzed for organisms with ≥20 isolates. The definition for multidrug-resistance (MDR) was based on the CDC and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control’s interim standard definitions. Data were analyzed using SAS v 9.4 software. Results: Among 161 participating nursing homes and 15,276 residents, 300 residents (2.0%) had documentation of a urine culture at the time of the survey, and 229 (76.3%) were positive. Escherichia coli, Proteus mirabilis, Klebsiella spp, and Enterococcus spp represented 73.0% of all urine isolates (N = 278). There were 215 (77.3%) isolates with reported susceptibility data (Fig. 1). Of these, data were analyzed for 187 (87.0%) (Fig. 2). All isolates tested for carbapenems were susceptible. Fluoroquinolone non-susceptibility was most prevalent among E. coli (42.9%) and P. mirabilis (55.9%). Among Klebsiella spp, the highest percentages of non-susceptibility were observed for extended-spectrum cephalosporins and folate pathway inhibitors (25.0% each). Glycopeptide non-susceptibility was 10.0% for Enterococcus spp. The percentage of isolates classified as MDR ranged from 10.1% for E. coli to 14.7% for P. mirabilis. Conclusions: Substantial levels of non-susceptibility were observed for nursing home residents’ urine isolates, with 10% to 56% reported as non-susceptible to the antibiotics assessed. Non-susceptibility was highest for fluoroquinolones, an antibiotic class commonly used in nursing homes, and ≥ 10% of selected isolates were MDR. Our findings reinforce the importance of nursing homes using susceptibility data from laboratory service providers to guide antibiotic prescribing and to monitor levels of resistance.
Background: Antibiotics are among the most commonly prescribed drugs in nursing homes; urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a frequent indication. Although there is no gold standard for the diagnosis of UTIs, various criteria have been developed to inform and standardize nursing home prescribing decisions, with the goal of reducing unnecessary antibiotic prescribing. Using different published criteria designed to guide decisions on initiating treatment of UTIs (ie, symptomatic, catheter-associated, and uncomplicated cystitis), our objective was to assess the appropriateness of antibiotic prescribing among NH residents. Methods: In 2017, the CDC Emerging Infections Program (EIP) performed a prevalence survey of healthcare-associated infections and antibiotic use in 161 nursing homes from 10 states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, and Tennessee. EIP staff reviewed resident medical records to collect demographic and clinical information, infection signs, symptoms, and diagnostic testing documented on the day an antibiotic was initiated and 6 days prior. We applied 4 criteria to determine whether initiation of treatment for UTI was supported: (1) the Loeb minimum clinical criteria (Loeb); (2) the Suspected UTI Situation, Background, Assessment, and Recommendation tool (UTI SBAR tool); (3) adaptation of Infectious Diseases Society of America UTI treatment guidelines for nursing home residents (Crnich & Drinka); and (4) diagnostic criteria for uncomplicated cystitis (cystitis consensus) (Fig. 1). We calculated the percentage of residents for whom initiating UTI treatment was appropriate by these criteria. Results: Of 248 residents for whom UTI treatment was initiated in the nursing home, the median age was 79 years [IQR, 19], 63% were female, and 35% were admitted for postacute care. There was substantial variability in the percentage of residents with antibiotic initiation classified as appropriate by each of the criteria, ranging from 8% for the cystitis consensus, to 27% for Loeb, to 33% for the UTI SBAR tool, to 51% for Crnich and Drinka (Fig. 2). Conclusions: Appropriate initiation of UTI treatment among nursing home residents remained low regardless of criteria used. At best only half of antibiotic treatment met published prescribing criteria. Although insufficient documentation of infection signs, symptoms and testing may have contributed to the low percentages observed, adequate documentation in the medical record to support prescribing should be standard practice, as outlined in the CDC Core Elements of Antibiotic Stewardship for nursing homes. Standardized UTI prescribing criteria should be incorporated into nursing home stewardship activities to improve the assessment and documentation of symptomatic UTI and to reduce inappropriate antibiotic use.
Acute change in mental status (ACMS), defined by the Confusion Assessment Method, is used to identify infections in nursing home residents. A medical record review revealed that none of 15,276 residents had an ACMS documented. Using the revised McGeer criteria with a possible ACMS definition, we identified 296 residents and 21 additional infections. The use of a possible ACMS definition should be considered for retrospective nursing home infection surveillance.
Following large declines in tuberculosis transmission the United States, large-scale screening programs targeting low-risk healthcare workers are increasingly a source of false-positive results. We report a large cluster of presumed false-positive tuberculin skin test results in healthcare workers following a change to 50-dose vials of Tubersol tuberculin.
Reports of bloodstream infections caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus among chronic hemodialysis patients to 2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention surveillance systems (National Healthcare Safety Network Dialysis Event and Emerging Infections Program) were compared to evaluate completeness of reporting. Many methicillin-resistant S. aureus bloodstream infections identified in hospitals were not reported to National Healthcare Safety Network Dialysis Event.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2016;37(2):205–207
Patients with candidemia are at risk for other invasive infections, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bloodstream infection (BSI).
To identify the risk factors for, and outcomes of, BSI in adults with Candida spp. and MRSA at the same time or nearly the same time.
Population-based cohort study.
Metropolitan Atlanta, March 1, 2008, through November 30, 2012.
All residents with Candida spp. or MRSA isolated from blood.
The Georgia Emerging Infections Program conducts active, population-based surveillance for candidemia and invasive MRSA. Medical records for patients with incident candidemia were reviewed to identify cases of MRSA coinfection, defined as incident MRSA BSI 30 days before or after candidemia. Multivariate logistic regression was performed to identify factors associated with coinfection in patients with candidemia.
Among 2,070 adult candidemia cases, 110 (5.3%) had coinfection within 30 days. Among these 110 coinfections, MRSA BSI usually preceded candidemia (60.9%; n=67) or occurred on the same day (20.0%; n=22). The incidence of coinfection per 100,000 population decreased from 1.12 to 0.53 between 2009 and 2012, paralleling the decreased incidence of all MRSA BSIs and candidemia. Thirty-day mortality was similarly high between coinfection cases and candidemia alone (45.2% vs 36.0%, P=.10). Only nursing home residence (odds ratio, 1.72 [95% CI, 1.03–2.86]) predicted coinfection.
A small but important proportion of patients with candidemia have MRSA coinfection, suggesting that heightened awareness is warranted after 1 major BSI pathogen is identified. Nursing home residents should be targeted in BSI prevention efforts.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2015;36(11):1298–1304
To estimate and compare the impact on healthcare costs of 3 alternative strategies for reducing bloodstream infections in the intensive care unit (ICU): methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) nares screening and isolation, targeted decolonization (ie, screening, isolation, and decolonization of MRSA carriers or infections), and universal decolonization (ie, no screening and decolonization of all ICU patients).
Cost analysis using decision modeling.
We developed a decision-analysis model to estimate the health care costs of targeted decolonization and universal decolonization strategies compared with a strategy of MRSA nares screening and isolation. Effectiveness estimates were derived from a recent randomized trial of the 3 strategies, and cost estimates were derived from the literature.
In the base case, universal decolonization was the dominant strategy and was estimated to have both lower intervention costs and lower total ICU costs than either screening and isolation or targeted decolonization. Compared with screening and isolation, universal decolonization was estimated to save $171,000 and prevent 9 additional bloodstream infections for every 1,000 ICU admissions. The dominance of universal decolonization persisted under a wide range of cost and effectiveness assumptions.
A strategy of universal decolonization for patients admitted to the ICU would both reduce bloodstream infections and likely reduce healthcare costs compared with strategies of MRSA nares screening and isolation or screening and isolation coupled with targeted decolonization.
A cluster of patients with respiratory cultures positive for Pseudomonas aeruginosa with a unique antibiogram was observed during June and July 2007 at a 1,000-bed urban teaching hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. These P. aeruginosa isolates were recovered from bronchoscopically obtained specimens.
A cross-sectional study was performed to assess whether the cluster was associated with exposure to a particular bronchoscope (B1); cultures from specimens from the bronchoscopes and the environment were obtained, and the P. aeruginosa isolate type was determined using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Records of patients exposed to B1 during the cluster period were reviewed.
Twelve patients with a culture positive for P. aeruginosa with the unique susceptibility pattern were identified in June-July 2007. No cases were documented from March 1 through May 31, 2007. Culture specimens obtained from B1 after high-level disinfection revealed P. aeruginosa, prompting removal of B1 from service on July 23, 2007. No cases occurred after that date. Eleven (55%) of 20 patients who were exposed to Bl during the cluster period had a culture positive for P. aeruginosa, compared with 1 (2%) of 53 patients who were exposed to other bronchoscopes (P < .001). PFGE patterns for P. aeruginosa isolates obtained from case patients and from B1 were identical. An engineering evaluation of B1 documented several internal damages. Two (10.5%) of 19 patients exposed to Bl during the cluster period may have developed P. aeruginosa infection following exposure to B1.
An outbreak or pseudo-outbreak of P. aeruginosa infection occurred in association with use of a damaged bronchoscope. Periodic engineering maintenance may be needed to prevent bronchoscope contamination that is resistant to high-level disinfection.
Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus organisms (VRE) have emerged as common nosocomial pathogens, but few population-based data are available on the impact of invasive VRE infections.
We assessed the incidence of invasive VRE infections and predictors of mortality among patients identified during prospective, population-based surveillance performed in the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) of Atlanta, Georgia.
From July 1997 through June 2000, a total of 192 patients who resided in the Atlanta MSA developed an invasive VRE infection, for a rate of 1.57 cases per 100,000 person-years. The incidence of invasive VRE disease significantly increased from 0.91 cases per 100,000 person-years during the first year of the study to 1.73 cases per 100,000 person-years during the third year of the study (P<.001). Rates of invasive VRE infection were significantly higher among African American patients than white patients (2.59 vs 0.70 cases per 100,000 person-years; P < .001). Blood was the most common sterile site from which VRE was recovered (161 [83%] of 193 isolates), followed by deep surgical sites (17 [9%]), peritoneal fluid (10 [5%]), pleural fluid (3 [2%]), and cerebrospinal fluid (1 [0.5%]). In multivariate analysis, a Charlson comorbidity index of 5 or greater, previous receipt of antibiotic therapy, having 2 or more sets of blood cultures positive for VRE, and receipt of central parenteral nutrition were independent predictors of mortality, whereas receipt of an antibiotic with in vitro activity against the VRE isolate was associated with a decreased risk of mortality. Molecular typing revealed 38 different pulsed-field gel electrophoresis patterns, but the 2 most common pulsed-field gel electrophoresis types were found at 3 Emory University-affiliated hospitals.
The incidence of invasive VRE infection significantly increased in the Atlanta MSA during the 3-year study period, with significant racial disparities detected. Receipt of an antimicrobial agent with in vitro activity against VRE was associated with a lower mortality rate. Molecular typing results demonstrated polyclonal emergence of VRE in Atlanta.
Pepper (Capsicum sp.) is important in human diets in many parts of the world and a major source of several antioxidants, including carotenoids, ascorbic acid, tocopherols and phenolics. More information on genetic diversity within Capsicum for antioxidant (AO) content and antioxidant activity (AOA) could contribute to improved human health. We evaluated 46 Capsicum accessions from AVRDC—the World Vegetable Center Capsicum core collection for content of nine AO (five carotenoids, ascorbic acid, tocopherols α and γ, and total phenolics) and two AOA assays for 2 years in south Taiwan. Ample genetic diversity exists within C. annuum to increase AO content. Based on dry weight values, non-pungent C. annuum entries as a group were significantly greater than pungent entries for contents of β-cryptoxanthin (36%), ascorbic acid (65%), total phenolics (36%) and α-tocopherol (11%). Group means of the brown-fruited entries exceeded the means of red-fruited entries for capsanthin (34%), zeaxanthin (37%), lutein (36%), β-cryptoxanthin (71%), β-carotene (82%), ascorbic acid (19%) and α-tocopherol (40%). Red-fruited C. annuum entries ‘Verdano Poblano’ and ‘Guajillo Ancho’ from Mexico ranked among the entries highest for all carotenoids, ascorbic acid and α-tocopherol. The inhibition of lipid peroxidation (ILP) assay could be adopted for AOA characterization or selection because of high variation among entries and consistent entry performance over years. ILP was positively correlated with phenolics (r=0.72**) and ascorbic acid (r=0.58**) contents. Significant positive correlations were detected between most carotenoids as well as a significant positive correlation between ascorbic acid and total phenolics contents (r=0.78**).
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has traditionally been a nosocomial pathogen. However, several recent studies have noted community-acquired MRSA among young, healthy patients with no risk factors or healthcare system exposure. We report the transmission of a strain of community-acquired MRSA in our neonatal intensive care unit.
To determine the risk factors for acquisition of nosocomial primary bloodstream infections (BSIs), including the effect of nursing-staff levels, in surgical intensive care unit (SICU) patients.
A nested case-control study.
A 20-bed SICU in a 1,000-bed inner-city public hospital.
28 patients with BSI (case-patients) were compared to 99 randomly selected patients (controls) hospitalized ≥3 days in the same unit.
Case- and control-patients were similar in age, severity of illness, and type of central venous catheter (CVC) used. Case-patients were significantly more likely than controls to be hospitalized during a 5-month period that had lower regular-nurse-to-patient and higher pool-nurse-to-patient ratios than during an 8-month reference period; to be in the SICU for a longer period of time; to be mechanically ventilated longer; to receive more antimicrobials and total parenteral nutrition; to have more CVC days; or to die. Case-patients had significantly lower regular-nurse-to-patient and higher pool-nurse-to-patient ratios for the 3 days before BSI than controls. In multivariate analyses, admission during a period of higher pool-nurse-to-patient ratio (odds ratio [OR]=3.8), total parenteral nutrition (OR=1.3), and CVC days (OR=1.1) remained independent BSI risk factors.
Our data suggest that, in addition to other factors, nurse staffing composition (ie, pool-nurse-to-patient ratio) may be related to primary BSI risk. Patterns in intensive care unit nurse staffing should be monitored to assess their impact on nosocomial infection rates. This may be particularly important in an era of cost containment and healthcare reform.
To examine risk factors for, and determine the incidence of, device-associated infections among patients with an implantable vascular access device.
Grady Health System, including a 1,000-bed, inner-city, public, teaching hospital and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), oncology, and sickle cell clinics in Atlanta, Georgia.
123 consecutive patients who received a PASPort implantable venous access device between January 1 and June 30, 1995.
Retrospective cohort study with follow-up ≥1 year following device implantation.
Underlying illnesses included HIV infection in 66 patients (median CD4 count, 24.4 cells/mm3), malignancy in 51, and sickle cell disease in 6. Mean age of patients was 43.7 years, 50% were male, and 74% were black. Thirty-one (25%) of 123 patients developed a primary or device-associated bloodstream infection (BSI), and 3 of the 31 patients experienced two separate episodes of infection. The overall rate of infection was 1.23 primary BSIs per 1,000 device days. Patients with cancer had a lower rate of infection than those with HIV infection, but the difference was not statistically significant (0.96 vs 1.50 BSIs/1,000 device days; relative risk, 0.58; 95% confidence interval, 0.27-1.26). Subgroup analysis of patients with different malignancies indicated that infection rates differed according to type of cancer, and there was a trend for heterogeneity across the different cancer strata (P=.06). Gram-positive pathogens accounted for 60% of the pathogens recovered. Six (19%) of 31 patients who developed an infection did so within the first 14 days after implantation. In 11 (32%) of the 34 BSIs, the port required removal; two patient deaths were attributed to device-associated bacteremias (0.072 deaths/ 1,000 device days).
Approximately one fourth of patients who had a vascular access device implanted developed a primary BSI, but the overall infection rate (per 1,000 device days) was relatively low, even among those with HIV infection. Primary BSI rates in patients with vascular access devices appeared to differ according to the specific underlying illness.
To evaluate the risk of nosocomial transmission of parvovirus B19 (B19) infection to healthcare workers (HCWs) exposed to patients with transient aplastic crisis (TAC) caused by acute B19 infection.
1,000-bed, urban teaching hospital in Atlanta, Georgia.
Eighty-seven exposed HCWs who cared for two patients with TAC prior to the time they were isolated and a comparison group of 88 unexposed HCWs from wards or clinics where the patients did not receive care.
Self-administered questionnaire on hospital contact with index patients, B19 community risk factors, and signs and symptoms suggestive of B19 disease. Serology for B19-specific IgM and IgG antibodies measured by antibody-capture enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
1 (3.1%) of the 32 nonimmune exposed HCWs had serologic evidence of recent B19 infection compared to 3 (8.1%) of the 37 nonimmune HCWs in the comparison group (P=.6). In a subgroup analysis of exposed HCWs who cared for index patients during the time when the virus load was expected to be greatest, a recent infection rate of 5.8% (1/17) was found among nonimmune HCWs.
The finding of similar rates of recent infection in nonimmune exposed and unexposed HCWs suggests that transmission to HCWs did not occur, despite failure to place the patients in isolation at the onset of hospitalization.
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