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MMWR – Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report

News Summary for October 20, 2011

1. Usual Sodium Intakes Compared with Dietary Recommendations – United States, 2005–2008

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Sodium intake of most Americans exceeds recommendations implying new strategies and increased efforts are needed to meet the Dietary Guidelines. Americans consume too much sodium, increasing their risk of high blood pressure and subsequent heart disease and stroke.  According to a new CDC study, almost all (99 percent) Americans who should reduce daily sodium intake to 1500 mg consume more than that amount, and nearly 90 percent of those who should reduce intake to less than 2300 mg consume more than that recommended level.  About half of all Americans aged 2 years and older and the majority of adults should reduce sodium intake to 1500 mg daily according to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Given the majority of the sodium we consume does not come from the salt shaker, new population-based strategies and increased public health efforts will be needed to meet the Dietary Guidelines.

2. Carbapenem–Resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae Associated with a Long–Term–Care Facility – West Virginia, 2009–2011

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Regional interventions targeting all levels of care are needed to prevent CRKP transmission, and continued CRKP surveillance is needed to further understand its epidemiology. Carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae (CRKP) is the most common carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae in the United States. CRKP infections are often associated with health-care settings, including long-term–care facilities (LTCFs). This report describes the first identified outbreak of CRKP in West Virginia, confirming the further spread of CRKP in the United States.  Although control of CRKP is challenging and multifactorial, thorough implementation of infection control interventions has decreased CRKP prevalence in health-care settings.

3. State Electronic Disease Surveillance Systems — United States, 2007 and 2010

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Continued progress in electronic disease surveillance systems functionality is critical for leveraging data exchange between electronic health record systems and public health to support national priorities to improve the health of Americans. An assessment conducted in 2010 by the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists to measure states’ capacity for electronic disease surveillance found that 94 percent of states had fully operational electronic surveillance systems for general communicable diseases, and a large majority (84 percent) of these systems was able to receive electronic laboratory reports in support of national health information exchange priorities. Escalating efforts to leverage the secure exchange of electronic health information to improve population health requires the public health community to prioritize funding for continued progress in improving the functionality and capacity of electronic surveillance systems.

4. Updated Recommendations for Use of Tetanus Toxoid, Reduced Diphtheria Toxoid and Acellular Pertussis Vaccine (Tdap) in Pregnant Women and Persons Who Have or Anticipate Having Close Contact with an Infant Aged 12 Months — Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), 2011

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Women are now recommended to get vaccinated with Tdap during pregnancy, a new strategy to protect infants, who are at greatest risk for serious illness and death from pertussis. In 2010, there were 27,550 cases of pertussis (whooping cough) reported in the US. Pertussis is highly contagious and can cause serious or prolonged illness.  Infants, especially those too young to be vaccinated, are at the greatest risk for serious illness and death. In order to reduce the burden of infant pertussis, pregnant women who have not yet received Tdap are now recommended to be vaccinated during pregnancy. A woman vaccinated with Tdap during pregnancy will pass on maternal pertussis antibodies to her baby which may provide protection against pertussis in early life, before the infant begins the primary DTaP series. Tdap will also protect the mother at time of delivery, making her less likely to transmit pertussis to her infant. Other family members and close contacts (e.g., parents, siblings, grandparents) should make sure they are also vaccinated at least 2 weeks before contact with the infant. 

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