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Environmental Testing Laboratory

Category Press Release
Publish Date 2/25/2020
Author Paul Cochrane
Title Identifying Environmental Microbial Pathogens and the Latest CDC Antibiotic Resistance Threats Report
Introduction EMSL Analytical offers rapid PCR and traditional laboratory methods to identify a wide range of microbial pathogens from indoor and outdoor environments.

Cinnaminson, NJ, February 25th , 2020

Last year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published an update to the agency’s first AR Threats Report from 6 years earlier. Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2019 (2019 AR Threats Report) includes updated national death and infection estimates, along with a wealth of other information.

The 2019 AR Threats Report states that more than 2.8 million antibiotic-resistant infections occur in the United States each year and more than 35,000 people die as a result. In addition, nearly 223,900 people in the United States required hospital care for Clostridioides difficile (C. diff) infections and at least 12,800 people died from those infections as recently as 2017.

The CDC lists the top 18 antibiotic-resistant pathogens and also includes 3 on the agency’s “Watch List.” The report excludes viruses and parasites, but does include bacteria and fungi. For the report, the agency uses “antibiotic” to describe antibacterial and antifungal drugs. Each of the microbial pathogens is placed into one of three categories based on the level of concern to human health. The categories include urgent, serious and concerning.  They include the following:

Urgent Threats
Carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter
Candida auris
Clostridioides difficile
Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae
Drug-resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae

Serious Threats
Drug-resistant Campylobacter
Drug-resistant Candida
ESBL-producing Enterobacteriaceae
Vancomycin-resistant Enterococci
Multidrug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa
Drug-resistant nontyphoidal Salmonella
Drug-resistant Salmonella serotype Typhi
Drug-resistant Shigella
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus
Drug-resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae
Drug-resistant Tuberculosis

Concerning Threats
Erythromycin-resistant group A Streptococcus
Clindamycin-resistant group B Streptococcus

Watch List
Azole-resistant Aspergillus fumigatus
Drug-resistant Mycoplasma genitalium
Drug-resistant Bordetella pertussis


“The presence of many of these microbes in the air or on surfaces in places such as hospitals, long-term care facilities, nursing homes and other locations that house people who may be susceptible to infections can be a serious concern,” said Jason Dobranic, Ph.D., Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “At EMSL, our environmental laboratories offer testing services for many of these pathogens and others not on the CDC’s list. Environmental testing can be vital to confirm cleaning and disinfection procedures in sensitive environments or to help pinpoint the source of an outbreak if one has already occurred.”

EMSL has also sponsored an educational video about the CDC’s 2019 AR Threats Report that can be seen at: https://youtu.be/f5As3sv0GJU. To learn more about environmental microbial testing services, please visit www.EMSL.com, email info@EMSL.com or call (800) 220-3675.


About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is one of the leading testing laboratories with 46 locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP <797>, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOC’s, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA-LAP, LLC (AIHA-LAP, LLC EMLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC IHLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at www.EMSL.com for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.

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