'One Of The Three Greatests Risks To Human Health,' Is On The Rise

Aug 6, 2014

CRE are antibiotic resistant organisms with a mortality rate of more than 48%.
Credit CDC

Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) are organisms that do not respond to antibiotics. They're mostly picked up by patients while in the hospital, and have a mortality rate ranging from 48% - 71%.  What's more, between 2008 and 2012, reports of CRE jumped five-fold in the southeastern United States.

New research out of Duke University suggests the so-called "superbugs" are a small, but growing threat. More than half of the hospitals in the study had some instance of CRE over the course of five years, with more than 300 cases reported total.

CREs are part of larger type of infection classified by the World Health Organization as one of the "three greatest risks to human health."

Phoebe Judge talked with the researchers who are working to identify and prevent new incidents of CRE.