So, you find yourself in the horrible situation of having a patient with a Gram-negative infection. Increasingly, clinicians are getting back reports from the microbiology lab showing pathogens that are resistant to every antibiotic they would normally use to treat a patient. What do you do when this happens?
First, immediately implement contact precautions (such as gloves and gowns). Secondly, in some cases you should do active surveillance among the patients who are epidemiologically linked to the case-patient. By conducting active surveillance, you can identify additional patients colonized with these organisms. This can help you determine whether you have ongoing patient-to-patient transmission of these bacteria in your facility. If you detect transmission—meaning that you identify cases among patients with epidemiologic links to your case-patient—vigorously reinforce infection prevention measures until no new cases are identified.
Now that you have searched, contained, and reinforced infection prevention, you have potentially saved numerous patients by preventing the spread of Gram negatives in your facility.
But, what about your index patient who you are still struggling to treat? And what is being done to look for more drugs in the pipeline? Tune in for the next two weeks to see how clinicians are tackling treatment of gram negatives and what our partners are doing to look for new drugs for these red bugs. In the meantime, we would like to hear your thoughts.
Red Bugs with No Drugs – Part 3: I.D. doctor on treatment
Red Bugs with No Drugs – Part 4: IDSA on the need for more drugs