A National Estimate of the Health and Cost Burden of Escherichia coli Bacteraemia in the Hospital Setting: The Importance of Antibiotic Resistance
Naylor NR., Pouwels KB., Hope R., Green N., Henderson KL., Knight GM., Atun R., Robotham JV., Deeny SR.
Abstract Background Antibiotic resistance poses a threat to public health and a burden to healthcare systems. Escherichia coli causes more bacteraemia cases in England than any other bacterial species, these infections, in part due to their high incidence, also pose a significant antibiotic resistance burden. The main aim of this study was to estimate the impact of E. coli bacteraemia on patient in-hospital mortality and length of stay. Secondarily, this study also aimed to estimate the effect of antibiotic resistance on these outcomes. Methods and Findings Case patients were adult E. coli bacteraemia patients infected between July 2011 and June 2012, as reported in an English national mandatory surveillance database, with susceptibility data taken from a national laboratory surveillance database. Control patients were all non-case, adult patients with an English hospital admission record. Case and control patient characteristics and admission information were taken from NHS Digital Datasets. ‘Resistance’ was defined as non-susceptible and intermediate isolates, whilst ‘susceptible’ was defined as susceptible and non-tested isolates. Time to in-hospital mortality and discharge was investigated through Cox proportional hazards models. To acquire estimates of excess length of stay, multistate models were constructed, with a unit bed day cost applied to estimate cost burden. The total number of case and control hospital spells was 14,051 and 8,919,275 respectively. Acquisition of E. coli bacteraemia was associated with a statistically significant increased daily risk of in-hospital mortality, especially for the first eight days of someone’s hospital admission [Hazard Ratio = 2.77 (95% confidence interval; 2.61-2.94)]. Antibiotic resistance did not seem to significantly increase this risk further, though did significantly reduce risk of experiencing a discharge event (dead or alive). E.coli bacteraemia was estimated to cost £14,340,900 over the study period (rounded to the nearest £100), with resistance associated with excess costs per infection of £220 - £420 dependent on resistance type, for those where a significant impact was found (rounded to the nearest £10). Conclusions E. coli bacteraemia places a significant burden on patient health and on the hospital sector in England. Resistance is an important factor on length of stay with regards to such infections.