(NEW YORK) -- A bacterial family that has become resistant to many antibiotics has caused infections in hospitalized patients and is an increasing concern, says the Center for Disease Control.
In a press release, the CDC called for action to stop the spread of Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae. The bacteria kill up to 50 percent of the patients who get bloodstream infections from them, says the press release. The bacteria, which include E. coli, are increasingly resistant to almost all antibiotics, and leave doctors with limited or no treatment options.
Dr. Thomas Frieden, Director of U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said, "CRE has not yet spread to the community like MRSA, and it's important that we keep it that way. We have a window of opportunity to prevent its spread." Almost one in five long-term acute care hospitals had at least one infection of the bacteria in the first half of 2012.
According to the CDC press release, doctors are very concerned that these "nightmare bacteria" could increase in frequency, leaving patients with potentially untreatable and deadly infections.
In 2001, CRE accounted for just one percent of infections in hospitalized patients. That number increased to four percent in 2012, according to the CDC.
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