The Presence of Drug-Resistant Bacteria in Hospital Sinks

When you visit a hospital, you expect the facility to be clean and sterile. In fact, hospitals must adhere to strict regulations when it comes to cleanliness. However, a new study at a hospital in Milwaukee found that strains of drug-resistant bacteria existed in multiple sink drains in the hospital. In spaces where sick patients reside each day, these bacteria can pose a significant hazard.

Drug-Resistant Bacteria Study

A study published in the American Journal of Infection Control examined the cleanliness of a 26-bed intensive care unit in Milwaukee. The hospital had an open concept design for each room, with two sinks: one near a toilet and one near a door. Researchers swabbed every sink drain in the unit. The study produced the following findings:

  • 87% of sinks next to toilets tested positive for Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase (KPC), a drug-resistant bacterium.
  • 21.2% of sinks near doors tested positive for KPC.

Causes of Drug-Resistant Bacteria

Hospitals are sterile facilities, but they also house thousands of sick patients. With these patients present and using bathrooms throughout the hospital multiple times per day, it’s no wonder that these infections occur. Hospital staff must practice strict cleanliness standards to reduce the risk of bacterial transmission in these settings and eliminate bacteria from their bathrooms.

The Risks of Drug-Resistant Bacteria in Hospitals

When you visit the hospital, you have compromised health. You may have a weakened immune system, open wounds, infections, or a multitude of other injuries and illnesses. In this state, you become even more susceptible to injury and illness. If you come in contact with bacteria due to poor cleanliness, you can develop a serious illness or complications with your existing condition.

Hospitals have a responsibility to keep their premises clean and safe. Have you contracted an illness due to bacteria in a DC hospital? Contact Regan Zambri Long today to receive your free case evaluation and learn more about your legal options.