A University of Michigan research study finds one in four seniors who are discharged from the hospital are carrying, at least, one “superbug” germ on their hands. This research was recently published in the JAMA Internal Med. Journal. The results of the study are astounding.
Furthermore, seniors who are admitted to nursing homes continue to gain new superbugs in their environment. Post-acute care arrangements are included in this portion of the study.
The bulk of the data studied includes seniors admitted to the hospital for surgeries as well as medical testing. This group of individuals also needed additional medical care before being able to return to home.
Three hundred, fifty-seven (357) seniors were included in the research study. Nearly one-fourth (1/4) of the patients had, at least, one superbug when checking into the additional care facility. The individuals were also tested fourteen days later in the facilities and nearly one-third (1/3) of them had additional superbugs.
A variety of suggestions is offered to bring these research statistics down in the future. Patient and care worker education in hand washing is highly important. Most medical experts are well aware of the need to properly wash hands. Patient education seems lacking and instructive models should be created.
Another option is to add stronger controls to the administration of antibiotics to patients. Infectious bacteria can develop and become more resilient to treatments when desperately needed.
Proper hand hygiene is important to keep superbugs in their proper place. The Center for Disease Control calls handwashing the “do-it-yourself” vaccine. Five simple steps are included in hand washing: Wet, Lather, Scrub, Rinse, Dry. Proper hand hygiene includes wetting hands with running water, applying soap, lathering, scrubbing for 20 seconds, rinsing well, and drying thoroughly.