Tuesday, October 23, 2007


From the American College of Emergency Physicians

Washington, D.C. — The spread of a potentially life-threatening antibiotic-resistant staph germ that is responsible for more deaths in the United States each year than the AIDS virus has prompted the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) to launch an education initiative aimed at protecting the public against the further spread of infection.

"This emerging 'super bug,' as it's known, is causing ACEP to mobilize for two reasons," said Linda Lawrence, MD, FACEP, president of the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP). "First, we are concerned about the possible spread of this potentially dangerous bacterium – especially in schools, nursing homes and health-care settings – so we are asking people to practice good hygiene, such as frequent hand-washing, to help prevent public outbreaks. Second, ACEP is cautioning against the continued widespread overuse of antibiotics, a practice that has in part caused drug-resistant germ strains like this one to emerge."

At the same time, emergency physicians across the country are on the lookout for cases of antibiotic-resistant infections so these patients can be isolated and treated with the few types of antibiotics that remain effective, before developing potentially life-threatening complications or spreading their infection to others.


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