A new antibiotic-resistant germ that apparently has its origins in India and Pakistan has sickened a handful of people in North America, with three of the cases reported in the United States.

The bacterium — designated New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase NDM-1 — produces an enzyme that makes them resistant to a group of antibiotics called carbapenems, which include drugs such as penicillin and ampicillin.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that there have been no deaths in these recent cases, but CDC reports that over 90,000 people contract “superbug” illnesses, and about 19,000 die from MSRA infections each year.  While the IAFF has been following new developments in treatment as well as products that “kill” these germs on contact, we want to remind our members to “Remember the Basics” — on ALL calls:

  • Don appropriate PPE (respirators, medical gloves, face/eye protection, gowns or garments)
  • Properly dispose/clean exposed PPE
  • Do not continue to wear contaminated clothing and do not bring contaminated items, including uniforms, home
  • Take care of your physical health (diet, rest, exercise)
  • If you are exposed, report it.
  • Where vaccines are available  – GET VACCINATED