Jan 30, 2020

News Social and communicative: Myxococcus xanthus is 2020's microbe of the year

They communicate with each other, rotate in groups and hunt in packs. This description sounds like large predators such as lions or wolves but it's actually referring to 2020's microbe of the year: the bacterium Myxococcus xanthus. This annual 'award' is selected by the Association for Germany's General and Applied Microbiology (VAAM), with about 3,500 member microbiologists.

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Dec 17, 2019

News Infection control at Christmas: Have a Hygienic Holiday

“Deck the halls with rows of trolleys” is just one headline of many reports with the same conclusion: Emergency departments world-wide are busiest over long holidays. Anecdotally, the theories as to why include over-indulgences, crowded celebrations leading to germ-sharing or the merger of cold weather and the flu season. As another major holiday period approaches, both medical practitioners and patients should think about prevention: What is it they can do to avoid, or lessen the effects of, holiday-time illnesses? What are effective measures for infection control at Christmas? Here are our four ideas for the holiday season:

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Dec 16, 2019

Study Infection control: Using big data analytics to estimate the efficacy of hygiene interventions

As the use of digitalisation increases, collecting and analysing big data sets can greatly contribute to improving patient safety. Mathematical models can be of great value for estimating how effective hygiene measures are in reducing infection risk. A recent study estimates the effect of combined infection control interventions on virus concentration on the hands of medical staff.

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Dec 05, 2019

News Continued success in the international fight against polio

The second out of three wild poliovirus strains has been eradicated. This was officially declared by the World Health Organization (WHO) on World Polio Day on 24 October. Since efforts to exterminate polio began in 1988, incidence has fallen by 99 per cent. According to WHO, today 18 million people can walk who would otherwise be paralysed.

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Nov 19, 2019

News Bacteria in hospital sinks: the plumbing that can sicken

Sink design may be an underestimated factor regarding the incidence of bacterial infections, particularly in clinical settings. A new UK study sheds light on how bacteria in hospital sinks can grow and spread. The findings also highlight the importance of hygiene measures and awareness amongst medical professionals.

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Nov 12, 2019

News Why Clostridioides difficile thrives in hospitals

The bacterium Clostridioides difficile, the pathogen that most often causes antibiotic-associated diarrhoea, has genetically specialised in hospital survival. According to a recent study by Nature Genetics, a strain that forms resistant spores is spreading among in-patient settings.

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Sep 16, 2019

News 17th September: World Patient Safety Day

Every day, patients all over the world suffer avoidable harm or risk being harmed while receiving healthcare. Providing safe care is one of the main challenges on the road to universal health coverage. The purpose of the first World Patient Safety Day on September 17th is to raise global awareness of patient safety, and make it a priority for all stakeholders.

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