Sharing Patient Data Among Healthcare Facilities Curtails Spread of VRE, Study Finds

Sharing patient data among regional hospitals can reduce the spread of vancomycin-resistant enterococci, according to a study published in the most recent issue of the American Journal of Infection Control.

Researchers at Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health created a computational model to track the spread of VRE among hospitals by patients carrying but not infected with the bacterium. They found that a change in infection dynamics at even one facility had a domino effect throughout the system.

With a moderate increase in VRE at one hospital, VRE also increased by an average of 3 percent at other hospitals in the same county region. A moderate decrease in VRE at one regional hospital, however, decreased VRE at other hospitals nearby even if they did not implement their own infection control measures.

According to researchers, increasing cooperation among hospitals could be key in reducing rates of VRE for entire regions. 

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