After broad-spectrum cephalosporins were widely adopted in the 1980s, multi-drug resistant pathogens such as carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae (CRKP) have emerged, presenting a threat to public health.
To better understand the trends in CRKP, researchers studied surveillance data from acute long-term care and outpatient settings across different geographic regions between 1999 and 2010. Results for 553,250 Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates were tested.
The researchers call the increase in the prevalence of drug-resistant strains in the non-acute setting “especially troubling,” as it may indicate a community-based epidemic. More laboratory capacity and coordinated surveillance strategies are needed to contain further spread of such emerging pathogens. The authors conclude,“Public health authorities should take notice of successful locally and nationally coordinated strategies for managing outbreaks and consider making CRKP a reportable disease.”