Efstathios Koutsostathis

Hospital-acquired infections are among the most significant issues within the healthcare system, both in Greece and abroad. This is because they are associated with severe morbidity and mortality. As a rule, in Intensive Care Units (ICU), hospital-acquired infections are caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria. The spread of infections by multidrug-resistant bacteria occurs in steps. Step one is usually considered to be colonisation of the ICU host-patient via indirect contact. A transmission vehicle in these cases are the hands of healthcare professionals. The main infections in this category are the ones that affect the respiratory system, followed by bloodstream infections, mainly through endovascular catheters, and urinary tract infections. Therefore, some simple measures can limit the spread of infections, improving the clinical outcomes for hospitalised patients. These include following hand hygiene, ensuring that the medical and nursing staff change disposable gloves, keeping the ICU areas extremely clean and keeping together hospitalised patients who are colonised by the same multidrug-resistant bacteria. However, many healthcare professionals fail to consistently comply with these guidelines, which leads to the spread of multidrug-resistant bacteria, and increased morbidity and mortality.

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