Outbreaks of hepatitis B infections were identified across four assisted living facilities from February 2009 to November 2011 in Virginia. CDC officials recommend that, besides vaccinations, increased infection control practices are warranted, according to data in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The outbreaks occurred among residents receiving assisted monitoring of blood glucose for the management of diabetes. According to the report, “Lapses in infection prevention practices during assisted monitoring of blood glucose were identified at three of the facilities.”
In facility A, there were no infection control lapses related to assisted monitoring of blood glucose, but there were five acute cases of HBV and four chronic cases of HBV identified among patients receiving the assisted monitoring. In facility B, 12 of the 13 residents receiving assisted monitoring had an acute HBV infection. An investigation found multiple procedural breaches by staff members during assisted monitoring.
In facility C, all of the cases of acute and chronic HBV infections had received assisted monitoring, and an investigation revealed that although each resident had a dedicated blood glucose meter and fingerstick device, staff members occasionally used the same fingerstick device for more than one resident and occasionally reused blood glucose meters. In facility D, there were six acute HBV cases and four chronic HBV infections. The investigation found similar infection control lapses.
For more information:
CDC. MMWR. 2012;61:339-344.
Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant disclosures.