Surveillance of antimicrobial resistance and evolving microbial populations in Vermont: 2011-2018

John Stelling*, Jennifer S. Read, William Fritch, Thomas F. O’Brien, Rob Peters, Adam Clark, Marissa Bokhari, Mattia Lion, Parisha Katwa, Patsy Kelso

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: This study presents trends in organism isolation and antimicrobial resistance in routine microbiology test results from acute-care hospital microbiology laboratories in Vermont. Methods: Organism identifications and antimicrobial susceptibility test results were captured from acute-care hospital laboratories to monitor geographic and temporal trends in resistance and emerging microbial threats with the free WHONET software. Results: Data were provided from 12 acute care hospital laboratories from 2011 through 2018 for 318,833 isolates from 148,994 patients (70% female, 74% outpatient, and 63% urine). Significant differences (p < 0.05) in age, gender, and antimicrobial susceptibility results (e.g. Escherichia coli and levofloxacin) between outpatient and inpatient isolates were identified with temporal increases in certain species (e.g. Aerococcus urinae) and resistance (e.g. Streptococcus pneumoniae and erythromycin). The use of multi-resistance phenotypes demonstrated significant heterogeneity (p < 0.05) in MRSA strains between facilities, for example Staphylococcus aureus resistant to six priority antimicrobials were found in no critical access hospitals (fewer than 25 inpatient beds) but in all non-critical access hospitals. Conclusions: Comprehensive electronic surveillance of antimicrobial resistance utilizing routine clinical microbiology data with free software tools offers early recognition and tracking of emerging community and healthcare resistance threats at the local and state level.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1055-1062
Number of pages8
JournalExpert Review of Anti-Infective Therapy
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2 Oct 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was partially supported by funds from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Vermont Department of Health (VDH), and research project grants R01GM103525, RR025040, and U01CA207167 from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Ethical approval was received from the Partners Healthcare Institutional Review Board. The contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of VDH, CDC, NIH, or WHO. The CDC, NIH, and WHO had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, or decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. The authors have no conflicting affiliations or financial or non-financial interests in the subject matter discussed in this manuscript. We wish to express our gratitude to the administrative, infection control, laboratory, and information technology staff of the participating hospitals for their collaboration in this statewide initiative.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • antimicrobial resistance
  • Microbiology laboratory
  • surveillance
  • Vermont


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