LONDON, Aug. 16 (UPI) -- A BBC survey of chickens on sale in Britain found a significant percentage contaminated with drug-resistant bacteria.
The Health Protection Agency tested 147 chickens for the BBC, including some raised overseas. The study found that more than half the chickens were contaminated with multi-drug resistant E. coli and about one-third with E. coli resistant to an important antibiotic used to treat bladder infections.
Twelve of the chickens had antibiotic resistant Campylobacter and one in 25 were contaminated with Vancomycin Resistant Enteroccci.
Dr. Mike Miller, director of infection control at St. Bart's Hospital in London, said that the findings could be a reason for an increase in the number of women with bladder infections that do not respond to treatment.
"We've known for years there've been outbreaks of bladder infections in different parts of the world but we haven't really known where the germs have been coming from," Miller told the BBC. "Potentially food could be a source."