Infection serious threat to developing countries

KARACHI: Dr Nizam Damani an expert on infection control has called for not to use antibiotics unnecessarily as the community at large may soon develop resistance against antibiotics with no alternate remedy in the near future.

Dr Damani who is a senior consultant at the Infection Prevention Control Unit of WHO in Geneva was speaking at a two-day seminar on infection prevention and control organized by SIUT.

Dr Damani who is a former graduate of Dow Medical College is currently a part of WHO decision making team on infection control in his inaugural address dwelt with two major topics with global perspective which included proper use and stewardship of antibiotics and importance of infection control in providing quality medical care.

Discussing the overall health scenario in developing countries he said there is a need of proper sanitation, hygiene and infection control not only in hospitals but also at community level.

WHO official in his presentation deeply regretted that infection control system in developing countries including Pakistan is in pitiable condition. He said the management or control is either nonexistence or totally ineffective. Infection specialist pointed out that whole exercise is cost effective as by spending 20 per cent one can cover 80 per cent of the population.

This basic step Dr Damani noted cost little but achieve durable and tangible results.

He reminded that infection control is an integral part of patient’s safety and quality care in developed world. The importance of hand hygiene is paramount in curtailing cross infection.

SIUT as a premier tertiary care institution of the country with several specialties has offered its services to become a hub institution for control infectious diseases declaring infection control on WHO guidelines as high priority agenda.

On the opening day of the seminar other speakers who spoke included Dr Shamim Khan from King’s College London who made a presentation on infection control for transplant patients. Dr Tahir Aziz of SIUT, Dr Shehla Baqi from Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital Karachi Dr Faisal Mahmood of Aga Khan University, Dr Asma Naseem, Dr Sunil Dodani and Dr Ali Nadeem all from SIUT discussed various aspects of infection control.