A quarter of nursing home residents are colonized with multidrug-resistant bacteria

Nursing homes should heighten their infection prevention and control measures because so many residents are colonized with multidrug-resistant bacteria, according to analysis published in the American Journal of Infection Control.

The literature review and meta-analysis found roughly a quarter (27 percent) of nursing home residents on average are colonized with multidrug-resistant gram-negative bacteria. The analysis also revealed advanced age, multiple comorbidities and just living in a nursing home are risk factors for superbug colonization.

"Identifying which patients are most prone to an increased risk of MDR-GNB will enable infection preventionists to tailor efforts and stem future contaminations," the study says. "The results of our study suggest that there is much more to be done with regard to infection prevention within nursing homes, and that increased measures must be taken with elderly patients in regard to MDR-GNB colonization."

According to Linda Greene, RN, president of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, "This study underscores the importance of having strong infection prevention programs in all nursing homes and long-term care facilities."

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