ESwab for Surveillance Cultures

- ESwab®

November 18, 2016

Hospital-Acquired Infections (HAI) are three scary words for anyone working in the healthcare industry. While a great deal is being done to increase awareness and prevention of HAIs, COPAN’s ESwab™ finds itself as one of the best collection and transport systems for screening for Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Vancomycin- Resistant-Enterococcus (VRE), Clostridium difficile (C. Diff), Carbapenem-resistant organisms (CRE) and other drug resistant organisms. Recent studies show that when it comes to trusted collection tools for microbial diagnostics, the healthcare community considers ESwab, as reliable, as it is versatile.

Surgical patients have been identified as those most at risk. These potentially life threatening infections are acquired at medical facilities and have been described as serious and expensive, but arguably avoidable. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that “[o]n any given day, about one in 25 hospital patients has at least one healthcare-associated infection.[1]” To encourage greater quality control within healthcare, the government has begun to enforce stern regulations.  One example is that of penalizing hospitals in 2017 by withholding Medicare reimbursement in the case of hospital acquired C. Diff infections, as mentioned in the study by Abdelsattar et al.

Controlling and preventing HAIs is important for hospitals as they continuously work to improve their methods for pre and post op surveillance of surgical patients. When proper monitoring and prevention is required, ESwab is king. Recent publications have shown the use of ESwab for surveillance culture. One such study, Automatic Digital Analysis of Chromogenic Media for Vancomycin- Resistant-Enterococcus Screens Using Copan WASPLab, sampled a staggering amount, over 104,730 specimens, using ESwab as the transport and collection kit.

COPAN’s Eswab, liquid Amies transport system has been successfully used for the following applications in different publications:
In the study by Davis et al, ESwab was used for surveillance of MRSA, and in addition had been validated for self-collection! Another study by Ny et al, on ESBL-producing Escherichia coli tested the connection between carriage and infection patients also self-collected.

Rectal Sampling
As demonstrated in the Simner et al study, regarding culture methods for Carbapenem-resistant organisms, over 210 vancomycin-resistant enterococcus rectal swabs were taken either in the modesty and comfort of the patient’s own home, or at the hospital.

Cost Savings
A study presented at the 2016 NSCMID meeting in Rovaniemi, Finland, by Karhukorpi et al, found that a laboratory can actually reduce costs and workload in the lab by initiating a “pooled ESwab” approach to collection.

In addition to all these exciting publications on the use of ESwab for surveillance cultures of different organisms, COPAN’s ESwab is included on the package insert of many of today’s leading assay platforms including: Alere™ i Strep A, BD Veritor™ System for Rapid Detection of Group A Strep, Xpert MRSA NxG, Meridian’s illumigene Pertussis, Quidel’s Solana™ GAS, cobas® Strep A by Roche, and the OSOM Ultra Flu A & B.

Perhaps COPAN should say the the “E” on ESwab stands for “everything!”

For a quick video on how to use ESwab, click here!

[1] HAI Data and Statistics at