Current healthcare cleaning protocol ineffective against A. baumannii

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The current healthcare cleaning protocol may be inadequate to rid patient rooms of multidrug-resistant (MDR) Acinetobacter baumannii, according to a study in the December issue of the American Journal of Infection Control. University of Maryland researchers collected 487 cultures from 32 patient rooms occupied by just-discharged patients with a known history of MDR A. Fifteen rooms (46.9%) tested positive for MDR A. baumannii before cleaning. Post-cleaning, eight rooms (25%) still tested positive for the pathogen, investigators found.

"This study shows how difficult it is to ensure removal of particularly resistant organisms from the environment even upon thorough discharge cleaning," said Anthony D. Harris, M.D., the study's lead author.