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According to Dr David Eyre, OUCAGS Clinical Lecturer, multi-use patient equipment can contribute to health-care associated outbreaks of infection, such as that caused by 'Candida auris'.

Electronic thermometerBetween 2015 and 2017, Dr Eyre and his colleagues investigated an outbreak of Candida auris (C. auris) in Oxford University Hospital’s Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit (NICU). They rarely found C. auris in the general environment and cultured it from multi-use patient equipment instead. They found that C. auris  cultured from the equipment matched the fungus encountered in patients. Also, ‘despite a bundle of infection control interventions, the outbreak was only controlled following removal of the temperature probes’, Dr Eyre explained.

According to Dr Eyre, ‘this reinforces the need to carefully investigate the environment, and in particular multi-use patient equipment, in any unexplained healthcare-associated outbreak’.  

Dr Eyre presented the research at the 28th European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ECCMID), Spain, 21-24 April 2018.

 

Further information:

Abstract and presentation 

ECCMID press release 

 

Photo credit: marcoverch Elektronisches Thermometer via photopin (license), unchanged