‘Crisis-level precautions’: How hospitals fight new era of superbugs

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Image: Shutterstock
[Superbug Candida auris can] survive for weeks outside a patient—on sinks and mattresses, door knobs and bedside tables. To eradicate it after one patient died, a hospital in Brooklyn even “had to rip out some of the ceiling and floor tiles” in his room. How often do hospitals have to take such extreme steps to stop the spread of these drug-resistant superbugs?

Fortunately, very rarely, but when they do, the steps required can be expensive and exacting. According to the CDC, hospitals can often manage outbreaks by simply paying more attention to cleaning the environment.

When hospitals know they have encountered an infection that can jump easily from patient to patient, they take crisis-level precautions. They isolate patients and prevent staff who treat them from caring for others. They hold meetings for medical and cleaning staff to train them on the specific rules for the specific microbe. They require visitors and staff to don gloves, gowns, and masks.


Related article:  Viewpoint: No, we don’t need a moratorium on germline gene editing

But still, patients shouldn’t worry too much about how their hospital is preparing for these new infections. As Susan Matthews wrote in Slate, your risk of being harmed, even if immunosuppressed, is extremely low.

Read full, original post: How Do Hospitals Stop the Spread of Drug-Resistant Superbugs Like C. Auris?

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