Potential sources of transmission of hospital acquired infections in the volta regional hospital in Ghana
Background: The study was undertaken to assess potential sources that might transmit Hospital Acquired Infections in the Volta Regional Hospital of Ghana.
Method: A total of 218 swabs were taken over a six month study period of two weeks sampling bi-monthly from 33 different door handles, taps, desk surfaces and lavatories and 15 different surfaces in the theatre before
and after cleaning on each sampling day. The swabs were cultured on Blood, Chocolate and Mac-Conkey agars and incubated for 24hrs at 35±2ºC afterwhich isolates were identified morphologically and
Results: A total of 187 (88.8%) bacterial isolates were obtained from the swabs (P<0.0017) made up of 55.5% non-pathogenic isolates, 33.3% pathogenic isolates and 14.2% no bacteria growth. There was significant difference between pathogenic isolates and no bacterial growth (P=0.0244). The largest pathogenic isolates were S. aureus (57.6%) and E. coli (39.4%) whilst Bacillus spp. was the only non-pathogenic isolate. Door handles of the various wards and theatre had the highest total bacterial isolates (25.7%), followed by the lavatories (24.6%); whereas the lavatories recorded the most pathogenic isolate (21), followed by taps. There was no change in S. aureus isolate numbers after cleaning
whereas E. coli decreased by (26.7%) and Bacillus spp. increase by (32.7%).
Conclusion: The high percentage of pathogenic isolates of S. aureus and E. coli as well as Bacillus spp. on fomites at the Volta Regional Hospital indicates a high potential risk of HAI in the hospital.