IMPORTANCE:

Resistance of gram-negative bacilli to carbapenems is rapidly emerging worldwide. In 2016, the World Health Organization defined the hospital-built environment as a core component of infection prevention and control programs. The hospital-built environment has recently been reported as a source for outbreaks and sporadic transmission events of carbapenemase-producing gram-negative bacilli from the environment to patients.

OBJECTIVE:

To assess risk after the identification of an unexpected, severe, and lethal hospital-acquired infection caused by carbapenemase-producing Pseudomonas aeruginosa in a carbapenemase-low endemic setting.

DESIGN, SETTINGS, AND PARTICIPANTS:

A case series study in which a risk assessment was performed on all 11 patients admitted to the combined cardiothoracic surgery and pulmonary diseases ward and the hospital-built environment in the Radboud University Medical Center, the Netherlands, in February 2018.

EXPOSURES:

Water and aerosols containing carbapenemase-producing (Verona integron-mediated metallo-β-lactamase [VIM]) P aeruginosa.

MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES:

Colonization and/or infection of patients and/or contamination of the environment after the detection of 1 patient infected with carbapenemase-producing (VIM) P aeruginosa.

RESULTS:

A total of 5 men (age range, 60-84 years) and 6 women (age range, 55-74 years) were admitted to the combined cardiothoracic surgery and pulmonary diseases ward. The risk assessment was performed after carbapenemase-producing (VIM) P aeruginosa was unexpectedly detected in a man in his early 60s, who had undergone a left-sided pneumonectomy and adjuvant radiotherapy. No additional cases (colonization or infection) of carbapenemase-producing (VIM) P aeruginosa were detected. Plausible transmission of carbapenemase-producing P aeruginosa from the hospital environment to the patient via the air was confirmed by whole-genome sequencing, which proved the relation of Pseudomonas strains from the patient, the shower drains in 8 patient rooms, 1 sink, and an air sample.

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE:

This study suggests that rethinking the hospital-built environment, including shower drains and the sewage system, will be crucial for the prevention of severe and potential lethal hospital-acquired infections.

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Autors:

Hopman J1Meijer C1Kenters N1Coolen JPM1Ghamati MR2Mehtar S3van Crevel R4Morshuis WJ2Verhagen AFTM2van den Heuvel MM5Voss A1,6Wertheim HFL1.

1 Radboudumc Center for Infectious Diseases, Department of Medical Microbiology, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
2 Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
3 Academic Unit for Infection Prevention and Control, Department of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, South Africa.
4 Center for Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine Radboudumc, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
5 Department of Pulmonary Diseases, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
6 Department of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, Canisius-Wilhelmina Hospital, Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
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