New CDC Vital Signs: Lethal, Drug-resistant Bacteria Spreading in U.S. Healthcare Facilities
Drug-resistant germs called carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, or CRE, are on the rise and have become more resistant to last-resort antibiotics during the past decade, according to a new CDC Vital Signs report. These bacteria are causing more hospitalized patients to get infections that, in some cases, are impossible to treat.
CRE are lethal bacteria that pose a triple threat:
- Resistance: CRE are resistant to all, or nearly all, the antibiotics we have - even our most powerful drugs of last-resort.
- Death: CRE have high mortality rates – CRE germs kill 1 in 2 patients who get bloodstream infections from them.
- Spread of disease: CRE easily transfer their antibiotic resistance to other bacteria. For example, carbapenem-resistant klebsiella can spread its drug-destroying weapons to a normal E. coli bacteria, which makes the E.coli resistant to antibiotics also. That could create a nightmare scenario since E. coli is the most common cause of urinary tract infections in healthy people.