The nosocomial colonization of T. Bear

W. T. Hughes, B. Williams, B. Williams, T. Pearson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

A national effort to reduce nosocomial infections includes a program developed at the National Institutes of Health to encourage handwashing in hospitals and day care centers. The program promotes a symbolic teddy bear (T. Bear) with slogans to remind hospital personnel and patients to practice handwashing. One of the items used is a stuffed toy T. Bear to be dispensed to the hospitalized child. Considering the manner in which children handle stuffed toys, we suspected the T. Bear might serve as a 'fomite' for transmission of nosocomial microbes. A prospective study of 39 sterilized T. Bears revealed that all became colonized with bacteria, fungi, or both within 1 week of hospitalization. Hospital acquired organisms cultured from the T. Bear included Staphylococcus epidermidis, Staphylococcus aureus, alpha streptococci, Corynebacterium acnes, Micrococcus sp, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Bacillus sp, and species of Candida, Cryptococcus, Trichosporon, Aspergillus and others. Concomitant cultures of the patients revealed similar isolates. Although the T. Bear handwashing campaign should not be discredited, the promotional toy may pose an unnecessary expense and hazard and should not be used in hospitals or day care centers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)495-500
Number of pages6
JournalInfection Control
Volume7
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes

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Hand Disinfection
Play and Playthings
Fomites
Trichosporon
Hospital Personnel
Ursidae
Cryptococcus
Micrococcus
Propionibacterium acnes
Hospitalized Child
Staphylococcus epidermidis
National Institutes of Health (U.S.)
Klebsiella pneumoniae
Aspergillus
Cross Infection
Streptococcus
Candida
Pseudomonas aeruginosa
Bacillus
Staphylococcus aureus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Hughes, W. T., Williams, B., Williams, B., & Pearson, T. (1986). The nosocomial colonization of T. Bear. Infection Control, 7(10), 495-500.

The nosocomial colonization of T. Bear. / Hughes, W. T.; Williams, B.; Williams, B.; Pearson, T.

In: Infection Control, Vol. 7, No. 10, 1986, p. 495-500.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hughes, WT, Williams, B, Williams, B & Pearson, T 1986, 'The nosocomial colonization of T. Bear', Infection Control, vol. 7, no. 10, pp. 495-500.
Hughes WT, Williams B, Williams B, Pearson T. The nosocomial colonization of T. Bear. Infection Control. 1986;7(10):495-500.
Hughes, W. T. ; Williams, B. ; Williams, B. ; Pearson, T. / The nosocomial colonization of T. Bear. In: Infection Control. 1986 ; Vol. 7, No. 10. pp. 495-500.
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