C. difficile has shown antibiotic resistance in people. Now it’s shown to be resistant to efforts to destroy it on surfaces by cleaning.

By Erika Edwards

Dangerous bacteria that pose a particular threat to the elderly and very sick hospital patients have been shown to survive on disposable hospital gowns and stainless steel surfaces — even after they’re scrubbed clean.

The bacteria, called Clostridioides difficile or C. diff., cause almost a half million infections every year in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. An estimated 29,000 of those infected die.

 

Credit: Jennifer Oosthuizen CDC

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