The illnesses were caused by invasive Group A Streptococcus (GAS) infections. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states, “Severe, sometimes life-threatening, GAS disease may occur when bacteria get into parts of the body where bacteria usually are not found, such as the blood, muscle, or the lungs. These infections are termed "invasive GAS disease." Two of the most severe, but least common, forms of invasive GAS disease are necrotizing fasciitis and streptococcal toxic shock syndrome. Necrotizing fasciitis (occasionally described by the media as "the flesh-eating bacteria") is a rapidly progressive disease which destroys muscles, fat, and skin tissue. Streptococcal toxic shock syndrome (STSS) results in a rapid drop in blood pressure and organs (e.g., kidney, liver, lungs) to fail. STSS is not the same as the "toxic shock syndrome" due to the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus which has been associated with tampon usage. While 10%-15% of patients with invasive group A streptococcal disease die from their infection, approximately 25% of patients with necrotizing fasciitis and more than 35% with STSS die.”
One Delaware-based company that has been on the frontline in helping healthcare providers identify and prevent microbial infections due to cross contamination and indoor air quality (IAQ) issues is Sussex Environmental Health Consultants (SEHC). Susan White, Ph.D., CMC, President of SEHC stated, “Infections at surgical centers and hospitals happen far too often. According to the CDC one out of every twenty hospital patients acquires an infection while being treated for another illness. This numbers are devastating to human health and add a tremendous strain to the healthcare system. At SEHC, our infection control experts have the experience and training to identify issues that can lead to infections of patients at both surgical centers and hospitals.”
SEHC recently sponsored a series of public outreach videos about healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) and microbial pathogens that can be viewed at:
To learn more about SEHC’s infection control, indoor air quality, environmental, or health and safety services, please visit http://www.sussexenvironmental.com, email susan.white@
About Sussex Environmental Health Consultants, LLC
SEHC is a certified woman owned business that provides environmental and health and safety consulting services. The company is located in the Mid-Atlantic and services customers nationwide. SEHC provides solutions to clients ranging from homeowners to international Fortune 500 Corporations.