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Chapter 7. Transmission of Resistant Dis... > Infection Control as Local Crisis Ma... - Pg. Vol1-106

106 Antibiotic Resistance Infection Control as Local Crisis Management Hospitals and health departments have staff responsible for identifying infection outbreaks, defining the pathogen involved, and developing solutions. Monitoring reportable diseases, such as tuberculosis, is mandatory. However, keeping track of many other diseases is discretionary; consequently, institutions can vary considerably in the quality of their infection control programs. One of the most visible activities is controlling outbreaks of resistant disease. Usually this means containment: patient isolation, special glove and gown procedures for anyone entering a particular patient's room, and sometimes use of rooms with controlled, filtered airflow. If possible, the disease is suppressed by identifying antibiotics that are effective. Often, outbreak control is performed when many lives and considerable money is at stake. Infection control programs also monitor and control antibiotic use in hospitals and long-term care facilities to preempt resistance. These institutions, including jails and prisons, can be breeding grounds for resistant diseases that then escape into the community. 155 Some of the specific tasks of hospital control programs are sketched in Box 7-1.