5 ways to prevent hospital acquired infections
Healthcare associated infections not only cost health care systems—upwards of US$28 billion annually in some countries—they also harm undreds of millions of patients worldwide every year, according to the World Health Organization. Statistics show that 1 out of 10 patients admitted in hospital acquire an infection and, in U.S. hospitals, an estimated 99,000 patients die of a hospital-acquired infection every year.
Demographic realities point to these numbers getting worse. The Saudi Arabian healthcare sector caters to a rapidly growing population, which is expected to reach 31.6 million by 2016. And, already 40% of the population is over the age of 34, meaning they will likely require more health-related interventions that
can expose them to infections.
Rising rates of drug-resistant bacteria also intensifies the problem. The U.S. Centres for Diseases Control (CDC) reports Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) infections have increased four fold in the last decade, with at least one patient affected in 42 US states. In Canada, the
Ontario Medical Association warned of a “crisis” in rising rates of drug-resistant bacteria, including antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Enterococcus. This year Saudi Arabia the government has worked relentlessly to keep the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) contained while learning how to treat those affected. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) has publicly praised the Saudi government for its hospital infection control efforts, surveillance, public awareness campaigns, reporting to the WHO, and epidemiologic investigations.