Nosocomial diarrhea outbreak, Chile

Coria P, Urízar C, Alba A, Noemí I, Pino A, Cerva JL. [The water supply of a pediatric hospital as a possible source of an outbreak of diarrhea due to Microsporidium spp. in immunocompromised patients] Rev Chilena Infectol. 2016 Aug;33(4):373-379. [Article in Spanish]

INTRODUCTION: The hospital water supply is a reservoir of a variety of potentially pathogenic microorganisms that can particularly affect children and immunocompromised patients. Potentially pathogenic Microsporidium spp. have been identified in water. Microsporidiosis is an emerging parasitic and opportunistic infection in immunocompromised patients.

OBJECTIVE AND METHOD: to describe an outbreak of nosocomial diarrhea due to Microsporidium, species Encephalitozoon intestinalis.

RESULTS: Seven cases of E. intestinalis associated diarrhea were reported between november 2012 and february 2013, in a unit of immunocompromised patients in L. Calvo Mackenna Children’s Hospital. Microsporidium spp. was found in the hospital water supply and water reservoir tank. Secondary cases were transmitted by contact. Control measures included contact precautions, not to use faucet water for hand washing, bottled water for drinking and water reservoir tank sanitation.

CONCLUSIONS: This research is about a nosocomial outbreak associated with water supply. Water quality in Chilean hospitals is an unresolved issue, especially in immunocompromised patient areas. Compliance of cleaning and disinfection of water supply systems in hospitals must be ensured.

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