They warn that in-hospital infections reached private homes



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In-hospital infections, largely caused by antibiotic-resistant bacteria, are no longer unique to medical facilities, warned the Argentine Association of Microbiology (AAM), who said that "they have already reached geriatrics and even patients in their homes."

This was one of the issues debated in the recent VIII Congress of the Argentine Society of Bacteriology, Mycology and Clinical Parasitology (Sadebac) – which is part of the AAM – and which generates concern in the scientific community, since "the rate of resistance to molecules with antibiotic action in usual use is very high."

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) annually about 700,000 people die from antimicrobial resistance (ADR), a figure that will reach 10 million by 2050 "if no action is taken."

"These infections associated with health care, also called in-hospital, are closely related to the use of medical devices with those who previously did not count, "he explained. the biochemist and specialist in Clinical Bacteriology, Jaime Kovensky Pupko.

The expert and coordinator of the Subcommittee on Antimicrobial Sadebac said that "the medicine has advanced enormously, so there are now more patients with compromised immune systems (transplanted, oncological) exposed to invasive procedures, which entail the inevitable risk of infection ".

He also stressed that "one of the issues of greatest concern is the low adherence rate to handwashing of health personnel, which in Argentina does not exceed 30% ".

"The biggest problem of non-handwashing is the transmission of bacteria horizontally," agreed the biochemistry Adriana Sucari, vice president of the AAM and president of Sadebac.

He added: "Doctors, nurses, kinesiologists and all health personnel who assist a patient who is carrying some resistant bacteria can disseminate it to the next patient if they do not sanitize their hands between one and the other."

Both specialists also agreed that it is "fundamental" to contain the rate of infections associated with health care, which are also seen in day hospitals, nursing homes and patients with home hospitalizations.

"Each medical institution has to design and implement a surveillance program that includes the search for carriers of multiresistant bacteria and the application of precautions to avoid horizontal transmission, which is that which occurs from one patient to another or through the hands of the personal assistance and the use of objects such as stethoscopes and thermometers, "Kovensky suggested.

He recalled that antimicrobial resistance is linked to the "abuse or misuse" of antibiotics: "In 2016 antimicrobial resistance was the health issue addressed at the United Nations Summit of Presidents."

"For the first time, the Heads of State committed themselves to adopt a strategy coordinated policy to address human, animal and agricultural health, "he said.

"Antibiotics must be prescribed by a doctor and that prescription must be filed at the pharmacy. There are studies that show that non-compliance with this rule reaches 80% in the province of Buenos Aires," he said in a statement.

He added: "This non-prescription sale responds in most cases to self-medication behaviors, in situations where the antibiotic is unnecessary because these are viral plaques, which produces resistant bacteria in the infectious focus or in the intestinal microbiota that inhabits us".

"We must all take care of the ecology of our own microbial flora if we want to contain the advance of microbial resistance," he added. Kovensky.

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