Bad news from California

By Maryn / June 29, 2009

Constant readers, some of you may be aware that one major nexus of MRSA infection gets very little attention, though I’ve tried to raise it here periodically. That’s MRSA in jails and prisons: Thanks to poor hygiene and extraordinary overcrowding, jails and prisons are hotbeds of the bug, and it is very common for people […]

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Restricting antibiotics in animals: Start by restricting access

By Maryn / June 28, 2009

Constant readers, those of you who follow the pressing issue of MRSA in animals will know the work of J. Scott Weese, DVS, associate professor of pathobiology at the University of Guelph in Ontario and supervising author of many crucial papers on MRSA in food and companion animals, including the first finding of MRSA in […]

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MRSA legislation in Congress

By Maryn / June 25, 2009

Readers, on Monday, Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA, 12th District) introduced a bill: HR 2937, the MRSA Infection Prevention and Patient Protection Act. It requires: hospitals to screen all patients entering high-risk units for MRSA infection adoption of best practices including contact precautions among health care professionals to prevent MRSA’s spread within hospitals. patients testing positive […]

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MRSA and pets

By Maryn / June 24, 2009

It’s been a while since we’ve focused on the presence of MRSA strains in pets, and the complications that can cause for the pets’ human owners/custodians/companions (or, in the view of my own two cats, abject servants. No, I will not post their pictures. I have some shreds of pride). The problem with MRSA and […]

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H1N1 and MRSA – first disclosed case

By Maryn / June 23, 2009

Readers, once again there’s a lot of MRSA-related news piling up, and I’ll try to roll some of it out over the next few days. But first, today we have to deal with an event that many of us have been anticipating, though not with any pleasure: the first known report of a MRSA death […]

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H1N1 flu and swine surveillance – more relevance for MRSA

By Maryn / June 12, 2009

Constant readers, you probably know that yesterday the World Health Organization declared the first flu pandemic in 41 years. I want to point out for you a side issue in the H1N1 story that has great relevance for MRSA, especially ST398. As described in this article I wrote last night for CIDRAP, three medical journal […]

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Antibiotics in water supplies

By Maryn / June 12, 2009

Via the journal Environmental Health Perspectives comes an important, comprehensive review article by scientists from Environment Canada and the Universite de Montreal on the presence of antibiotics in water supplies and waste water. The news is not good. If you are concerned about the possibility that antibiotic residues in the environment create another setting in […]

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Farm animals and antibiotics – a new campaign

By Maryn / June 11, 2009

I was gobsmacked to discover today, a few days late, that the Pew Campaign on Human Health and Industrial Farming (authors of the report discussed here) have launched a marvelously in-your-face series of ads in Washington DC, aimed at bringing the issue of antibiotic use in farm animals to people who might not think about […]

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MRSA in pig-farm workers – very high rates

By Maryn / June 10, 2009

Let’s go back for a moment to what I think of as the “third epidemic” of MRSA: ST398 and the other strains that reside in animals and cross to humans. (In my personal taxonomy, the first and second epidemics are hospital-acquired and community-associated.) Via Emerging Infectious Diseases, the open-access journal published by the CDC (Do […]

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Infections rise, but hospital budgets – and infection control – shrink

By Maryn / June 9, 2009

Bad news from the Association of Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC): In a survey of almost 2,000 of their 12,000 members, 41% say that their hospitals’ infection-prevention budgets have been cut due to the down economy. According to the survey, conducted March 2009 and released Tuesday morning: Three-quarters of those whose budgets were […]

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