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Intensive care unit cleaning decreases MRSA and other bacteria

A study published in the March 28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine looked at intensive care unit rooms previously inhabited by patients with MRSA or ancomycin-resistant enteroccoci (VRE) and compared the effect of a cleaning intervention with how it reduced both infections.

Researchers looked at using a cleaning intervention with patients admitted to 10 intensive care units at a 750-bed academic medical center from September 1, 2006 to April 30, 2008. They compared this with baseline periods from September 1, 2003 to April 30, 3005, reports the study. [1]

During the intervention, black light markers and disinfectant cleaning cloths soaked in buckets were used to show the importance of bucket submersion while cleaning the ICU. Researchers looked at patient room stays that involved MRSA and VRE acquirement and then looked at the rate of patients contracting the diseases in exposed rooms.

MRSA exposure decreased from 3% to 1.5% and VRE decreased from 3% to 2.2%. Those who were staying in rooms with MRSA bacteria were more inclined to acquire the disease during the baseline period, but not during the intervention period. The study also found that patients in rooms with VRE bacteria had an increased risk of contracting both diseases during both periods.

How does your facility ensure MRSA or VRE are not infecting patients? Have you used the intervention program?

Looking to improve your facility’s infection rates? The Infection Prevention Video Toolkit can help your facility prevent MRSA, VRE, C.diff, and other “super bugs” while educating workers on proper hand hygiene and transmission-based precautions. Purchase the toolkit, The Infection Prevention Video Toolkit: Seven-Minute Solutions for Five IC Hotspots, here. [2]