Late Breaking News
Researchers Warn: Use of Last-Resort Antibiotics on Rise at VA, Could Lead to More Hospital-Acquired Resistant Infections
Use of carbapenems, a powerful class of antibiotic sometimes referred to as “last-resort” antibiotics has risen significantly over the last five years, according to a large study of VA hospitals.
VA Says Infection Control Problems Being Remedied, Defends Response Against Congressional Accusations of Secretiveness
Washington - Despite the VA’s efforts to improve oversight in areas such as the cleaning and reprocessing of medical equipment, infection risks still exist for patients, according to a recent government report.
WASHINGTON—A nationwide initiative by VA to reduce the spread of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) within its facilities has resulted in a dramatic drop of more than 60% in hospital-acquired infections in less than three years, according to a recent study.
With 90% of U.S. Influenza Deaths in Elderly, New High Dose Vaccine Seeks Lower Mortality, Morbidity Rates
The elderly suffer disproportionately from seasonal influenza, with nearly 90% of all deaths occurring in those older than 65. One explanation is that the standard flu vaccine does not increase antibody levels for older recipients at the same rate as younger recipients. To address that issue, a high-dose flu vaccine was introduced for use in the 2010-2011 influenza season in an effort to decrease the rate of serious illness and/or mortality.
The high rate of mental health conditions not only can make it difficult for HCV-infected veterans to manage their own illnesses. Those psychiatric issues also can be barriers to interferon treatment and liver transplants. In response, VA resource centers are employing a multi-disciplinary approach to HCV disease management.
Lack of treatment adherence is one of the biggest difficulties for health providers trying to manage HIV patients. Now, a new computerized assessment tool being rolled out by the VHA helps identify patients who are not taking their drugs as well as reasons for noncompliance.
Working against significant odds to develop a highly-protective vaccine against a parasitic disease, military researchers are seeking to prevent malaria, which kills as many as a million people a year around the world. The Army and Navy combined their malaria programs in 2007 to focus on the task with the goal of finding a vaccine with an 80% or higher protection rate for troops. The military research also benefits the population at large, with one discovery now in Phase III trials for a vaccine to protect infants in Africa.
Rates of herpes zoster have nearly doubled among veterans seeking care through the VA since 2000. The disease, also known as shingles, creates significant morbidity, especially when herpetic neuralgia, a painful complication, is involved. Yet, use of the vaccine, introduced in 2007, remains low at about 2% in both the VA and general populations.
WASHINGTON, DC—With a decline in the number of central line associate bloodstream infections in intensive care units, the focus is turning to an area where such infections are burgeoning – kidney dialysis clinics.
WASHINGTON, DC—With two-fifths of the world’s population at risk for dengue fever, a severe flu-like illness which sometimes leads to fatal complications, the development of a vaccine has long been an important, albeit elusive, goal in managing the disease.
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