By Daniela Nuñez
“14,000 Americans die every year from diarrhea-causing C. difficile (or C. diff for short) infections and 337,000 people are hospitalized, according to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Unlike other healthcare-associated infections that have been on the decline over the past decade, C. diff infection rates and deaths climbed to historic highs and ‘pose threat across medical facilities,’ adding at least $1 billion in extra costs to the health care system, said the CDC Director.
The people most at risk are those who take antibiotics and also receive medical care in any setting. This could include a nursing home, hospital, doctor’s office, outpatient surgery center, etc. Those most at risk include people who have been in a hospital or other health care facility and have taken antibiotics in the past three months, especially those over age 65. About half of all antibiotics that patients are given are not needed, raising the risk of C. diff infections.”
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