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Delaware Health Alert Network #370

October 3, 2016 11:11 am

Health Advisory


The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) is currently investigating an outbreak of Burkholderia cepacia (B. cepacia) bloodstream infections possibly associated with intravenous (IV) infusions.


This outbreak is potentially part of a multistate outbreak currently being investigated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC has made DPH aware of the possibility of contaminated intravenous infusions shipped to local long term care facilities or other medical providers.

B. cepacia, typically associated with respiratory infections in individuals with cystic fibrosis and other respiratory diseases can also be transmitted from contaminated medications and devices. B. cepacia is frequently resistant to many common antibiotics and decisions on the treatment should be made on a case-by-case basis. Consultation with infectious disease physicians should be considered in managing these patients.


Health care providers should consider B. cepacia bloodstream infections in patients presenting with findings suggestive of sepsis, especially those with a history of IV infusion treatment through central venous lines and those who are (or have been) recent residents at long term care facilities. Providers are reminded to obtain multiple blood cultures in patients who have been receiving intravenous therapies in whom blood stream infection is suspected.

While DPH is reaching out to the specific facilities that are believed to have received contaminated infusion solution, it also urges all medical providers to immediately report all non-respiratory cultures that are positive for B. cepacia since July 16, 2016, to DPH by phone at 888-295-5156 or by fax at 302-223-1540.

Additionally, all non-respiratory B. cepacia isolates should be held in the identifying laboratory until further notice.

Additional information

More information about B. cepacia can be found at CDC webpage:


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