Medical Musings: The antimicrobial mirage


Much of the buzz at medical shows in the past three years has been about the need to develop new antimicrobial technology to combat hospital-borne infections. The driver was a congressional mandate that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid withhold reimbursement for care related to infections acquired by patients during hospital stays.

The goal was to stop "the perverse incentive" in which hospitals financially benefitted by doing a poor job in controlling infections.

The new Medicare rules, which took effect Oct. 1, 2008, coupled with the growth in drug-resistant bacteria would push the global market for healthcare antimicrobial plastics to 221,758 metric tons by 2017, according to a report last year by research firm Global Industry Analysts (San Jose, CA)....
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