Background: Available data on antibiotic resistance in sub-Saharan Africa is limited despite its increasing threat to global public health. As there is no previous study on antibiotic resistance in patients with clinical features of healthcare-Associated infections (HAIs) in Sierra Leone, research is needed to inform public health policies. Our study aimed to assess antibiotic resistance rates from isolates in the urine and sputum samples of patients with clinical features of HAIs. Methodology: We conducted a cross-sectional study of adult inpatients aged ≥18 years at Connaught Hospital, an urban tertiary care hospital in Freetown between February and June 2018. Results: Over the course of the study, we enrolled 164 patients. Risk factors for HAIs were previous antibiotic use (93.3%), comorbidities (58.5%) and age (≥65 years) (23.9%). Of the 164 samples, 89.6% were urine. Bacterial growth was recorded in 58.8% of cultured specimens; the type of specimen was an independent predictor of bacterial growth (p < 0.021). The most common isolates were Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae; 29.2% and 19.0% in urine samples and 18.8% and 31.3% in sputum samples, respectively. The overall resistance rates were 58% for all extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL)-producing organisms, 13.4% for carbapenem-resistant non-lactose fermenting gram-negative bacilli, 8.7% for carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB) and 1.3% for carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE). There were no carbapenem-resistant P. aeruginosa (CRPA) isolates but all Staphylococcus aureus isolates were methicillin-resistant S. aureus. Conclusion: We demonstrated a high prevalence rate of ESBL-producing organisms which are a significant burden at the main tertiary hospital in Sierra Leone. Urgent action is needed to strengthen microbiological diagnostic infrastructure, initiate surveillance on antibiotic resistance and develop and implement policy framework on antibiotic stewardship.
- Antibiotic resistance/stewardship/ bacteria/ diagnostic infrastructure
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Microbiology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases
- Pharmacology (medical)