Original Article · Originalarbeit
Outbreak of Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococci (VRE) in a Hematological Oncology Ward and Hygienic Preventive Measures. A Long-Term StudyKnoll M.a · Daeschlein G.b · Okpara-Hofmann J.a · Klare I.c · Wilhelms D.d · Wolf H.e · Borneff-Lipp M.a
aInstitut für Hygiene, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, bInstitut für Hygiene, Ernst-Arndt-Universität Greifswald, cRobert Koch-Institute Berlin, Bereich Wernigerode, dInstitut für Medizinische Mikrobiologie, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, eUniversitätsklinik und Poliklinik für Innere Medizin IV, Hämatologie und Onkologie, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, Germany
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Background: We report on two endemic outbreaks of VRE (vancomycin-resistant enterococci, vanA type Ente-rococcus faecium) on a hematological oncology ward in a university hospital and a new strategic concept to fight against spread of VRE. Patients and Methods: During management of the outbreak, a total of 1,124 patients and 1,700 specimens were investigated from June 1999 to December 2001. Protective measures were instituted. Intensive prophylactic infection control was practiced until December 2003. Results: Of the 1,124 patients, 44 were VRE-positive. From 1,700 environment speci-mens, 110 VRE isolates were obtained from the inani-mate environment, 5 from the living environment. Mole-cular biological typing identified 5 different clones which had spread on the ward in different locations. Conclu-sion: The study shows the need for prophylactic microbi-ological screening investigations in the risk group of hematological oncology patients and consistent imple-mentation of protective hygiene measures to prevent the spread of multiresistant infectious pathogens on risk wards. It is also shown that intervention can to control such an endemic outbreak.
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