New Study Shows How Bacteria Develop Resistance to Vancomycin

Vancomycin is a powerful, chlorine-containing antibiotic drug that often works when all other antibiotics fail. Vancomycin has saved the lives of patients suffering from serious, stubborn bacterial illnesses. Now, for the first time, researchers have uncovered how bacteria recognize and develop resistance to vancomycin. A research team led by Dr. Gerry Wright of McMaster University


Chlorhexidine glutonate solution reduces hospital-acquired bloodstream infections

Two of the most common “superbugs” which cause bloodstream infections are Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and Vancomycin-resistant Enterococci (VRE).These bacteria can infect as many as one in five patients in hospital intensive care units andincrease the chances of dying by as much 25 percent. Even when they are not fatal, such infections can lengthen hospital stays by an average of seven


National Poison Prevention Week

In observance of National Poison Prevention Week (March 14-20), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in conjunction with the Poison Prevention Week Council, recommendslocking up household cleaners, disinfectants, solvents and other materials to reduce accidental poisoning among children. On March 15, 2010, President Obama issued a proclamation recognizing the third week of March as National Poison Prevention Week.


Hospital-Acquired Infections Killed 48,000 Americans in One Year

According to a new study, sepsis and pneumonia, two common illnesses caused by hospital-acquired infections, killed 48,000 Americans in 2006, and cost the nation over 8 billion dollars to treat. The study, co-authored by Dr. Ramanan Laxminarayan and Dr. Anup Malani, is titled,Clinical and Economic Outcomes Attributable to Health Care – Associated Sepsis and Pneumonia, and


Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare’s Hand Hygiene Project

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 2 million patients acquire a hospital-related infection every year and 90,000 die from that infection. The Joint Commission’s newly created Center for Transforming Healthcare is using robust process improvement methods to find the root causes of, and solutions for, dangerous and potentially deadly breakdowns


Harvard Rates H1N1 Top Health Story of the Year

The Harvard Health Letter selected H1N1 as the top health story of the year, in part because health officials and the general public approached the H1N1 pandemic with relative calm, despite the fact that this strain of influenza had (and still has) the potential to become more virulent and more infectious. For years, health officials


Disinfection and Cleaning for H1N1: Outside Services or Home Practices?

Public fears about contracting H1N1 have boosted sales of hand sanitizers and are likely driving the purchase of cold and flu remedies, as well as increasing visits to doctors’ offices or emergency rooms. This same concern is also creating a cottage industry built around H1N1 cleaning and disinfection services. Former disaster restoration companies and anti-microbial


Miami Hotel Evacuated Due to Legionnaires’ Disease

Health officials have determined that a water filter removed too much chlorine, possibly allowing the spread of Legionnaires’ disease, which is suspected of sickening at least two guests since October at the luxury EPIC Hotel in Miami. Based on an initial investigation, it appears that the hotel installed a special filtration system to enhance the quality


Disinfect–Don’t Infect

Controlling viral populations on household surfaces is an effective way to cut down on the spread of seasonal and H1N1 flu. Although flu viruses require live host cells to multiply and spread, they can live on inanimate surfaces for hours or even days. Good hygiene requires more than just cleaning. Proper disinfection provides an additional safeguard for areas where people come into contact with contaminated surfaces.