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The most relevant activities of clinical microbiologist and the laboratory in the surveillance and the control of nosocomial infections (NI) are mainly focused on the collection, analysis and management of the information obtained in the Microbiology Laboratory; the design, development and validation of microbiological techniques, particularly rapid tests for the early detection of nosocomial pathogens, especially those multi-drug resistant ones, and the study of the genetic relationship between them. It also assists in the design of specific programs for the prevention of the NI, and the evaluation of their impact, as well as taking part in educational and training programs on topics related to NI. The management of laboratory resources, and communications with hospital information systems is also important. The most suitable tools for the control of NI include the correct identification at the species level of relevant nosocomial pathogens, analysis of the evolution of resistance to antimicrobials, monitoring sentinel organisms, active surveillance of carriers, and molecular epidemiology studies (genotyping). Prospectively typing of these pathogens, which has been achieved through advances in technology, and dissemination of molecular techniques, have a direct impact on the design of prevention and control interventions. To achieve the maximum performance with all these tools, it is essential to have a good communication strategy and an effective alert system. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier España, S.L. All rights reserved.


Lorena López-Cerero, Felipe Fernández-Cuenca, Alvaro Pascual. The Microbiolgy laboratory in nosocomial infection surveillance and control]. Enfermedades infecciosas y microbiología clínica. 2013 Jan;31(1):44-51

PMID: 23218739

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