First comprehensive Canadian antibiotic resistance web resource launched



    - RESEARCH PORTAL PROVIDES NEW TOOL IN BATTLE AGAINST SUPERBUGS -

    HALIFAX, March 15 /CNW/ - The Canadian Antimicrobial Resistance Alliance
(CARA) today announced the launch of a new web portal at the at the joint
conference of the Association of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Disease
(AMMI) Canada and the Canadian Association of Clinical Microbiology and
Infectious Diseases (CACMID) in Halifax. The CAN-R website (www.canr.info) is
aimed at supporting and educating Canadian healthcare providers and
researchers on the escalating issue of antimicrobial resistance, bacteria that
are resistant to commonly used antibiotics. The CAN-R website brings together
the most current data and information on the surveillance of
antibiotic-resistant bacteria in Canada, the use of antimicrobials, clinical
guidelines and the latest research on infections caused by
antimicrobial-resistant pathogens, as well as existing and investigational
treatments.
    The website features study findings such as the recent CAN-ICU study,
which examined the prevalence of superbugs in Canadian intensive care units
and identified rates higher than previously believed of antibiotic-resistant
bacteria such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA),
vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE), and extended-spectrum beta-lactamases
(ESBL).

    First Comprehensive Resource

    Dr. George Zhanel, Professor, Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty
of Medicine, at the University of Manitoba is leading the website's
development as Editor-in-Chief. "This is a very exciting endeavor for Canadian
researchers, since until now there has been no other single resource in Canada
that provides this level of current and comprehensive information," says
Zhanel. "The rise of antibiotic resistance in Canada is of increasing concern
to the healthcare community and this new tool will help them stay on top of
the issues as they battle these superbugs."
    Contributing to the multi-pronged approach to infection control required
to reduce antibiotic resistance in Canada, the CAN-R editorial board has
created a resource that will act as an authority on a wide range of resistance
and infection control issues. The website provides comprehensive information
on identifying and tracking resistant pathogens and infections, antimicrobial
usage data, content summaries from major conferences and meetings, key
publications from evidence-based medical literature, content related to the
microbiology of infectious diseases in Canada, learning tools, clinical
updates and guidelines related to managing infections in Canadian hospitals
and communities.

    Information is Critical

    According to Dr. Zhanel, the fight against these virulent superbugs may
never be won entirely, but there is hope. "The most realistic approach to the
management of antibiotic resistance is to be one step ahead of these mutating
organisms in an effort to effectively treat infections, and ultimately to
diminish their spread in hospitals and communities across Canada. Access to
credible, relevant, and accurate information will be a critical success factor
in the fight against these resistant pathogens."
    Clinical updates are used as a tool to keep visitors to the website
current on the latest developments in the area of antibiotic resistance from
the Canadian perspective. These updates focus on emerging issues, new
research, investigational and new antimicrobials, and resistance surveillance
in an effort to provide the Canadian healthcare provider with the full scope
of the issues in a timely manner.
    Representing the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) on the CAN-R
editorial board is Dr. Michael Mulvey, Chief, Antimicrobial Resistance and
Nosocomial Infections, National Microbiology Laboratory. "The launch of the
CAN-R website is a welcomed step forward in the fight against antimicrobial
resistance," said Dr. Mulvey. "Getting the latest science-based information
into the hands of Canadians, particularly healthcare providers, is the best
way to reduce illnesses associated with this threat."

    About CARA

    CARA is a research group dedicated to the study of medical
microbiology/infectious diseases issues with special interest in infections
caused by antimicrobial resistant pathogens as well as antimicrobial usage in
Canada. The CARA headquarters are in Winnipeg, Canada, but CARA researchers
are based across Canada and include site members who contribute to national
antimicrobial resistance surveillance studies including CAN-ICU, CAN-WARD,
CROSS and NAUTICA.





For further information:

For further information: Christina Scicluna, Cohn & Wolfe, (416)
924-5700 ext. 4037, christina_scicluna@ca.cohnwolfe.com

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THE CANADIAN ANTIMICROBIAL RESISTANCE ALLIANCE

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