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Hospitals or nursing homes? Study to scope spread of antibiotic resistance

Are hospitals the reservoir of antibiotic resistant bacteria? Or is it nursing homes?

Research from the University of Queensland (UQ) has received a $1.8 million government funding boost to find out.

The study will explore the spread of antibiotic resistant germs between people in nursing homes and hospitals.

UQ Professor David Paterson said elderly Australians face dire outcomes if they contract serious infections.

“We want to understand infection control methods during hospital admissions.

“By looking at bacteria at a molecular level, we can determine if there is a spread of strains between nursing homes and hospitals,” Paterson said.

The funding will also support the introduction of a stewardship program in nursing homes, where antiobiotic use will be closely monitored.

“We want to make sure that the correct antibiotics are being prescribed in correct doses,” Paterson said.

“We’re confident that the stewardship program and infection control measures implemented over the next five years will help patients by reducing the rate of infection.

“By proving the success of this program scientifically, we can implement it across Australia and then internationally, saving countless lives.”

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