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Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2005 Jul;26(7):638-45.

Use of strain typing data to estimate bacterial transmission rates in healthcare settings.

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  • 1Department of Medical Informatics, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To create an affordable and accurate method for continuously monitoring bacterial transmission rates in healthcare settings.

DESIGN:

We present a discrete simulation model that relies on the relationship between in-hospital transmission rates and strain diversity. We also present a proof of concept application of this model to a prospective molecular epidemiology data set to estimate transmission rates for Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus.

SETTING:

Inpatient units of an academic referral center.

PATIENTS:

All inpatients with nosocomial infections.

INTERVENTION:

Mathematical model to estimate transmission rates.

RESULTS:

Maximum likelihood estimates for transmission rates of these two species on different hospital units ranged from 0 to 0.36 transmission event per colonized patient per day.

CONCLUSIONS:

This approach is feasible, although estimates of transmission rates based solely on strain typed clinical cultures may be too imprecise for routine use in infection control. A modest level of surveillance sampling substantially improves the estimation accuracy.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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