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1.  Infection control practice in countries with limited resources 
Nosocomial infections and their control are a world-wide challenge. The prevalence of nosocomial infections is generally higher in developing countries with limited resources than industrialized countries. In this paper we aimed to further explain the differences with regard to infection control challenges between Turkey, a country with "limited" resources, and the Netherlands, a country with "reasonable" resources. Infrastructure of hospitals, low compliance of hand hygiene, understaffing, overcrowding, heavy workload, misuse of personal protective equipments, late establishment of infection control programme are major problems in limited-resources countries. These problems cause high infection rates and spread of multi-drug resistant pathogens. To improve the control and prevention of infections in countries with limited resources, a multi-facet approach is needed.
PMCID: PMC3225304  PMID: 22018286
Infection control; developing country; limited resource; multi-drug resistant pathogen
2.  A multi-center blinded study on the efficiency of phenotypic screening methods to detect glycopeptide intermediately susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (GISA) and heterogeneous GISA (h-GISA) 
To determine the true incidence of hGISA/GISA and its consequent clinical impact, methods must be defined that will reliably and reproducibly discriminate these resistant phenotypes from vancomycin susceptible S. aureus (VSSA).
This study assessed and compared the ability of eight Dutch laboratories under blinded conditions to discriminate VSSA from hGISA/GISA phenotypes and the intra- and inter-laboratory reproducibility of agar screening plates and the Etest method. A total of 25 blinded and unique strains (10 VSSA, 9 hGISA and 6 GISA) were categorized by the PAP-AUC method and PFGE typed to eliminate clonal duplication. All strains were deliberately added in quadruplets to evaluate intra-laboratory variability and reproducibility of the methods. Strains were tested using three agar screening methods, Brain Heart Infusion agar (BHI) + 6 μg/ml vancomycin, Mueller Hinton agar (MH) + 5 μg/ml vancomycin and MH + 5 μg/ml teicoplanin) and the Etest macromethod using a 2 McFarland inoculum.
Results and Discussion
The ability to detect the hGISA/GISA phenotypes varied significantly between methods and phenotypes. BHI vancomycin and MH vancomycin agar screens lacked the ability to detect hGISA. The MH teicoplanin agar screen was more sensitive but still inferior to Etest that had a sensitivity of 98.5% and 99.5%, for hGISA and GISA, respectively. Intra- and inter-laboratory reproducibility varied between methods with poorest performance seen with BHI vancomycin.
This is the first multi-center blinded study to be undertaken evaluating various methods to detect GISA and hGISA. These data showed that the ability of clinical laboratories to detect GISA and hGISA varied considerably, and that screening plates with vancomycin have a poor performance in detecting hGISA.
PMCID: PMC2034580  PMID: 17892555
3.  Community-acquired MRSA and pig-farming 
Sporadic cases of CA-MRSA in persons without risk-factors for MRSA carriage are increasing.
Case presentation
We report a MRSA cluster among family members of a pig-farmer, his co-workers and his pigs. Initially a young mother was seen with mastitis due to MRSA. Six months later her baby daughter was admitted to the hospital with pneumococcal otitis. After staying five days in hospital, the baby was found to be MRSA positive. At that point it was decided to look for a possible source, such as other family members and house-hold animals, including pigs on the farm, since those were reported as a possible source of MRSA earlier.
Swabs were taken from the throat and nares of family members and co-workers. A veterinarian obtained swabs from the nares, throat and perineum of 10 pigs. Swabs were cultured following a national protocol to detect MRSA that included the use of an enrichment broth. Animal and human strains were characterized by PFGE, spa-typing, MLST analysis, SSCmec, AGR typing, and the detection for PVL, LukM, and TSST toxin genes.
Three family members, three co-workers, and 8 of the 10 pigs were MRSA positive. With the exception of the initial case (the mother) all persons were solely colonized, with no signs of clinical infections.
After digestion with SmaI, none of the strains showed any bands using PFGE. All isolates belonged to spa type t108 and ST398.
1. This report clearly shows clonal spread and transmission between humans and pigs in the Netherlands. 2. MLST sequence type 398 might be of international importance as pig-MRSA, since this type was shown earlier to be present in epidemiologically unrelated French pigs and pig-farmers. 3. Research is needed to evaluate whether this is a local problem or a new source of MRSA, that puts the until now successful Search and Destroy policy of the Netherlands at risk.
PMCID: PMC1654169  PMID: 17096847
4.  Ventilator associated pneumonia and infection control 
Ventilator associated pneumonia (VAP) is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in intensive care units. The incidence of VAP varies from 7% to 70% in different studies and the mortality rates are 20–75% according to the study population. Aspiration of colonized pathogenic microorganisms on the oropharynx and gastrointestinal tract is the main route for the development of VAP. On the other hand, the major risk factor for VAP is intubation and the duration of mechanical ventilation. Diagnosis remains difficult, and studies showed the importance of early initiation of appropriate antibiotic for prognosis. VAP causes extra length of stay in hospital and intensive care units and increases hospital cost. Consequently, infection control policies are more rational and will save money.
PMCID: PMC1540438  PMID: 16600048
5.  Incidence, risk factors and mortality of nosocomial pneumonia in Intensive Care Units: A prospective study 
To determine the frequency, risk factors and mortality of nosocomial pneumonia a prospective study was conducted in the intensive care units. In the study period, 2402 patients were included. The nosocomial pneumonia was defined according to the Centers for Disease Control Criteria. Overall, 163 (6.8%) of the patients developed nosocomial pneumonia and 75.5% (n = 123) of all patients with nosocomial pneumonia were ventilator-associated pneumonia. 163 patients who were admitted to the intensive care unit during the same period but had no bacteriologic or histologic evidence of pneumonia were used as a control group. The APACHE II score, coma, hypoalbuminemia, mechanical ventilation, tracheotomy, presence of nasogastric tube were found as independent risk factors. Crude and attributable mortality were 65% and 52.6%, respectively. The mortality rate was five times greater in the cases (OR: 5.2; CI 95%: 3.2–8.3). The mean length of stay in the intensive care unit and hospital in the cases were longer than controls (p < 0.0001). Patients requiring mechanical ventilation have a high frequency of nosocomial pneumonia.
PMCID: PMC521500  PMID: 15369593
Hospital infections; ventilator-associated pneumonia; death rates

Results 1-5 (5)