The Global Disease Detection and Response Program (GDDRP) at the U.S. Naval Medical Research Unit No. 3 (NAMRU-3) is working with the Infection Control Department at the Egyptian Ministry of Health to improve the quality and safety of healthcare in Egypt.
This program, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, focuses on hospital-acquired infection (HAI) surveillance activities in 28 hospitals in Egypt, including 93 intensive care units (ICUs) in Cairo, Alexandria, Minya, Luxor and South Sinai (five geographically representative governorates).
“The long-term plan is to expand the surveillance program to all intensive care units in Egypt over the next three years,” said Dr. Maha Taalat, NAMRU-3 lead investigator in the NAMRU-3 Infection Control Program. “This will allow us to have a national surveillance program for HAIs and antimicrobial resistance in all intensive care units of Egypt.”
The GDDRP’s Monitoring and Evaluation team has been the catalyst in setting up this surveillance by conducting over ninety assist visits to these hospitals from May 2011 to January 2013 to evaluate the implementation of the surveillance activities. The GDDRP team’s objectives were to provide on-site technical support to the surveillance teams at each hospital and identify the implementation challenges.
At visits with each participating hospital ICU, the GDDRP team met with hospital surveillance officers to ensure proper data collection through the use of logbooks and personal digital assistants (PDAs) and to identify issues delaying diagnosis and reporting of suspected HAIs.
The team also coordinated with local laboratory personnel to ensure the use of optimal bacterial pathogen identification techniques and timely transport of bacterial isolates to the NAMRU-3 reference lab. They also worked with the hospital data managers to ensure surveillance data were correctly downloaded from the PDAs and sent to NAMRU-3 for analysis. Finally, the team provided refresher training to each hospital’s infection control team and discussed surveillance implementation issues unique to each site.
Article courtesy of Naval Medical Research Center.