Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE)
What is Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE)?
Enterococci are a type of bacteria normally present in the human intestine and in the environment. These bacteria can sometimes cause infections. Vancomycin is an antibiotic that is often used to treat infections caused by enterococci. In some instances, enterococci have become resistant to this drug and thus are called Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococci (VRE). VRE is spread from one person to another through direct contact. Hand hygiene is the most effective way to prevent VRE.
VRE can be present on the caregiver’s hands either from touching contaminated material excreted by an infected person or from touching articles soiled by feces. VRE can survive on hands and can survive for weeks on inanimate objects such as toilet seats, taps, door handles, bed rails, furniture and bedpans. VRE is easy to kill with the proper use of disinfectants and good hand hygiene.
VRE Bacteraemia is the presence of the VRE bacteria in the blood stream and is referred to as the blood stream infection.
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To learn more about hospital infection control rates, please visit the Ministry and Long-Term Care website.TOP