C. diff burden dropped by almost 25% over 5 years

The national burden of healthcare-acquired Clostridium difficile infections decreased by 36% between 2011-17, according to a study published April 2 in The New England Journal of Medicine.

The Emerging Infections Program used C. diff infections at 10 U.S. sites to estimate the national burden of C. diff through infection rates, recurrences, hospitalizations and hospital deaths from 2011 through 2017.  

The estimated national number of C. diff infections and associated hospitalizations decreased over the five years, mostly because of the decline in healthcare-associated infections.  

The study found 15,461 C. diff cases in 2011 at the 10 sites, with 10,177 healthcare-associated C. diff infections. In 2017, there were 15,512 total C. diff cases at the 10 sites, with 7,973 healthcare-associated cases. The estimated C. diff national burden decreased by 24 percent from 2011-17. The national burden of healthcare-associated C. diff infections decreased by 36 percent, whereas the community-associated rate was unchanged. The estimated number of hospitalizations for C. diff infections decreased by 24 percent over the five years.

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