ECDC concerned about rise in vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium

  • Dawn O'Shea
  • Univadis Medical News
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The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has expressed concern at the increasing rate of vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium.

The agency’s report on Surveillance of antimicrobial resistance in Europe 2018 shows that the population-weighted mean percentage for vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium in the European Union/European Economic Area (EU/EEA) increased from 10.5 per cent in 2015 to 17.3 per cent in 2018. No distinct geographical pattern was seen.

In 2018, more than half of Escherichia coli isolates and more than a third of Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates were resistant to at least one antimicrobial group, and combined resistance to several antimicrobial groups was frequent.

While carbapenem resistance remained rare in Escherichia coli, several countries reported carbapenem resistance percentages above 10 per cent for Klebsiella pneumoniae. Carbapenem resistance was also common in Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Acinetobacter.

The report states that for Streptococcus pneumoniae, the resistance situation appears stable but with large inter-country variations. The decline in the percentage of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) continued in 2018, although levels were still high in several countries, and combined resistance to other antimicrobial groups was common.

The ECDC says the data show that public health action to tackle antimicrobial resistance remains insufficient.