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  • Author or Editor: Greg A. Ballash x
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To estimate the prevalence of extended-spectrum cephalosporin-, carbapenem-, and fluoroquinolone-resistant bacteria of the family Enterobacteriaceae in the feces of hospitalized horses and on hospital surfaces.


Fecal and environmental samples were collected from The Ohio State University Galbreath Equine Center (OSUGEC) and a private referral equine hospital in Kentucky (KYEH). Feces were sampled within 24 hours after hospital admission and after 48 hours and 3 to 7 days of hospitalization.


Fecal and environmental samples were enriched, and then selective media were inoculated to support growth of Enterobacteriaceae bacteria that expressed resistance phenotypes to extended-spectrum cephalosporins, carbapenems, and fluoroquinolones.


358 fecal samples were obtained from 143 horses. More samples yielded growth of Enterobacteriaceae bacteria that expressed resistance phenotypes (AmpC β-lactamase, OR = 4.2; extended-spectrum beta-lactamase, OR = 3.2; and fluoroquinolone resistance, OR = 4.0) after 48 hours of hospitalization, versus within 24 hours of hospital admission. Horses hospitalized at KYEH were at greater odds of having fluoroquinolone-resistant bacteria (OR = 2.2). At OSUGEC, 82%, 64%, 0%, and 55% of 164 surfaces had Enterobacteriaceae bacteria with AmpC β-lactamase phenotype, extended-spectrum beta-lactamase phenotype, resistance to carbapenem, and resistance to fluoroquinolones, respectively; prevalences at KYEH were similarly distributed (52%, 32%, 1%, and 35% of 315 surfaces).


Results indicated that antimicrobial-resistant Enterobacteriaceae may be isolated from the feces of hospitalized horses and from the hospital environment. Hospitalization may lead to increased fecal carriage of clinically important antimicrobial-resistance genes.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Widespread use of antimicrobials in human and veterinary medicine drives the emergence and dissemination of resistant bacteria in human, animal, and environmental reservoirs. The AVMA and FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine have both taken public positions emphasizing the importance of incorporating antimicrobial stewardship in veterinary clinical settings; however, a model for implementing a comprehensive antimicrobial stewardship program in veterinary practice is not readily available.

In 2015, The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine began developing a veterinary antimicrobial stewardship program modeled on existing programs in human health-care institutions and the 7 core elements of a successful hospital antimicrobial stewardship program, as defined by the CDC. The program includes comprehensive antimicrobial use guidelines, active environmental surveillance, and enhanced infection control procedures in The Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center, along with routine monitoring and reporting of antimicrobial prescribing practices and antimicrobial susceptibility patterns of common pathogens isolated from patients and the hospital environment. Finally, programs have been developed to educate clinicians, staff, and students on antimicrobial resistance and appropriate antimicrobial prescribing practices.

The antimicrobial stewardship program has been designed to help clinicians and students confidently make judicious antimicrobial use decisions and provide them with actionable steps that can help them act as strong stewards while providing the best care for their patients. This report describes our program and the process involved in developing it, with the intent that the program could serve as a potential model for other veterinary medical institutions.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association