Author – Alexander Kallen, MD, MPH
CDC’s Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion
Last week my colleague Dr. Brandi Limbago addressed the issue of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) and specifically enzymes called KPCs and NDM-1s that are causing the bacteria to become resistant to last-resort antibiotics. Today, CDC released a report about another enzyme causing CRE. This one is called VIM (Verona integron-encoded metallo-beta-lactamase). VIM has been found previously in a number of countries including Greece where this patient had been transferred from. View recommendations for surveillance and prevention here.
Just as Dr. Limbago mentioned last week, these enzymes are new routes to the same destination: CRE. All types of CRE are significant and emerging public health problems, regardless of their route to resistance or their country of origin. The fact is that we live in a very small world, medically speaking, and it’s not surprising that these organisms are moving from country to country. This situation simply reinforces the need for better antibiotic stewardship, transmission prevention and overall healthcare-associated infection (HAI) prevention in every hospital and practice – today.