Tag Archives: Infection control

How to Deal With Pathogenic Microorganisms on Stethoscopes?

“Stethoscopes can take part in the transmission of health care-associated infections. We cultured 112 stethoscopes by direct imprint on blood agar to estimate the prevalence of potentially pathogenic microorganisms. Forty-eight (47%) produced 50 potentially pathogenic microorganisms; from these, 43 (86%) were Staphylococcus aureus, of which 18 (42%) were methicillin-resistant S. aureus. We concluded that stethoscopes should be considered as potential fomites and must be disinfected routinely before and after each patient contact.”

The above quote was taken from a study published in the American Journal of Infection Control on October 31, 2013, reminding us of all of the ways germs can be transmitted within the hospital. Just like a physician’s neck tie, lab coat, and blood pressure cuff, we know there are many common items in healthcare facilities that are capable of easily transmitting harmful bacteria. Instead of trying to wipe each item down with a disinfectant cloth, we have a better recommendation. By placing your stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, cell phone, keys, thermometer, pens, etc., into this mobile uv light station for 60 seconds, you can protect yourself and those around you from over 300 dangerous germs. UV Flash disinfecting system has shown a 100% kill rate on C. difficile, staphylococcus aureus, and acinetobacter baumanni in just 60 seconds.

This simple and effective disinfection solution saves healthcare workers from dealing with messy chemicals or spending too much time on disinfection. Just place the items inside, shut the door, and press start. The UV Flash is recommended for waiting rooms, clinics, lobbies, medical offices, nursing stations, ICU’s and more. See the proof.

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10 Ways To Protect Patients From Infections

The safer your patients are, the safer you are too. If you can get healthcare workers to follow these basic steps you can have a tremendous impact on infection throughout your facility. Forward this list to your coworkers today and start making infection prevention a top priority.

  1. Make patient identification a priority: right drug, right time, right dose.
  2. Keep the patient’s room and equipment clean.
  3. Know when antibiotics are appropriate . . . and when they are NOT.
  4. What you wear matters! Make sure your attire does not become a source of infection.
  5. Know about the infection preventionist.

OSF Saint Francis Medical Center produced this light hearted video highlighting just how easily germs can spread within the hospital. Informing employees on how you expect them to handle routine procedures can be a cost saving and life saving policy. Some procedures may seem obvious to most but studies have shown that it doesn’t necessarily mean they are followed as one would expect.

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The CDC is on Pinterest!?!

It seems like I’ve been hearing more and more talk about the CDC and infection control lately. On TV sitcoms, evening documentaries and of course the evening news.  This is both good news and bad. Increasing awareness is the name of the game for organizations like Midbrook Medical and the CDC. However, it might also indicate that this issue of dangerous infections that is spreading further and faster.  Image

At first thought it is sort of an odd combination, disease control and social media. But Pinterest?  It’s really kind of neat. Infection Prevention authorities are blogging, hashtagging, tweeting and now pinning.

On the CDC’s Pinterest Board, they are encouraging us to embrace our “Inner #PHNerd” and share our passion for public health with others.  If you Follow their board, you’ll see the campaign is in its early stages of development with a mere 5 pins but they also have over a thousand followers already. Even on Pinterest there can be fun conversations about public health and inform others about ways to be prepared for emergencies.

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Are We Running Out Of Antibiotics?

Deadly super bugs are starting to become such a big problem that nearly everyone has heard mention of this major concern.  But, what can we do about it?  Could we have reached the end of the era of antibiotics?  What can we do to fight back against these super bugs?  Dr. Arjun Srinivasan from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention spoke with Frontline about the rising problem of superbugs and the options that we have left to combat them.

The following interview is lengthy but I guarantee it is one everyone must read in order to better understand the severity of what is happening. An issue like this is going to take more than doctors and drug companies to solve. Read this article and watch this video then forward it on to help increase action at the local level to combat this problem.


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Is There a Vitamin That Prevents Infection?

The answer is D, as in Vitamin D.

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has published a new trial showing that high doses of vitamin D3 supplements can help effectively protect against infections and reduce use of antibiotics among the elderly.

Vitamin D products, can be found in small amounts in a few foods, including fatty fish like tuna. It is also more available these days through dairy, juices and cereals.  Our parents (and commercials) always told us that milk does a body good because it helps treat weak bones, prevent osteoporosis, arthritis, and even skin conditions among other things. The vitamin is also obtained through exposure to sunlight, which is by far my favorite form. It has been known to enhance innate immunity by promoting the production of antibacterial peptides which help fight microbial and viral infection prevention.

The wonder vitamin even helps prevent the flu! The study observed that “taking vitamin D supplements can be at least as effective as the flu vaccine, which has a normally lower than 50 to 60% efficacy.” By using both the vaccine and vitamin D, to prevent the flu, odds of getting an infection can be even lower but as a person who loves sun but hates needles, this is still some good news.

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Is There a Zombie Apocalypse Happening?

GetAKit_BadgeWell no, but sort of.

The term zombie apocalypse has been trending over the internet but now with a much different definition. Many view a so-called zombie apocalypse as the end of the world. People rise from the dead in rotten corpses and scower the earth for blood and brains as their new food source.  I don’t like movies about zombies because it doesn’t make sense to me and really its scary to even think about. Yet the same could be said for deadly bacteria like CRE. I don’t understand it and its pretty scary too. Read here about CRE and the spread of a bacteria that leaves untreatable infections.

Now when you search google to find information on a zombie apocalypes, you might be surprised to see that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is what pops up in the results. The CDC?!? Yep. And it almost makes sense! It turns out this cheeky campaign is really catching on, bringing infection prevention awareness to a whole new level.

In the middle of International Infection Prevention Week, going on now through the 26th of October, PBS’s Frontline is featuring a 1-hour investigation into antibacterial resistant infections including NDM-1 and the NIH CRE outbreak. The best part about all of it, is that its on tonight! The director, Dr. Ali Khan says, “If you are generally well equipped to deal with a zombie apocalypse you will be prepared for a hurricane, pandemic, earthquake, or terrorist attack.”

Find out how to be prepared by watching the feature tonight, Tuesday October, 22nd (check your local listings for times) – Hunting the Nightmare Bacteria

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APIC’s New Infection Prevention Campaign

This week the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) announced a new campaign to increase educational efforts and increase awareness on the importance of infection prevention. If you haven’t checked out the Infection Prevention and You  website yet, you should right now.

This is a great way for infection prevention professionals to keep both patient and healthcare professionals informed of current infection prevention strategies and patient safety information. One of the things I like best about this site is that it shares advice on what to do at home, work, school, and even on vacation. The new campaign empowers more than just those in the healthcare field to be proactive in preventing infection. When nearly 1.7 million people in the U.S get infections in hospitals while being treated for something else, it takes an army to stop this unnecessary tragedy from happening.

During this time of the government shutdown and the CDC currently out of the office, its great timing for APIC to step up to help. The latest example of the government shutdown effects is the outbreak of salmonella in chicken that has sickened people in 18 states. APIC’s tab called “Your home,” on new site highlights proper cooking techniques to prevent foodborne illnesses.

Show your support in APICS’s infection prevention efforts and share this great infographic with others.

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