Carbapenemase Producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE)

In Ireland, the terms carbapenemase producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) and carbapenem resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) are often used interchangeably by healthcare workers when referring to a family of bacteria that live in the bowel. CPE/CRE have developed the ability to become resistant to last-resort powerful antimicrobials known as carbapenems, which makes them more challenging to treat if they go on to cause infection.

This antimicrobial resistance problem was first reported in Ireland in 2009 and is increasing in incidence and has been reported as the cause of outbreaks in healthcare settings.

HSE HCAI AMR programme resources are available at: 

Last update: 3 April 2018