From March 1976 through December 1978, the prevalence of ampicillin- and gentamicin-resistant enteric bacilli was monitored in fecal cultures of neonates in an intensive care unit. Substantial fluctuations in colonization rates were observed which did not correlate with the occurrence of sepsis due to these organisms nor with variations in antibiotic use. This experience suggests that the availability of these surveillance data did not result in more effective control of neonatal sepsis due to enteric bacilli.

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