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Year : 2023  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 35-43

Tracking Annual Antimicrobial Resistance at a Tertiary Care Hospital amidst Raging COVID-19 Pandemic

Department of Microbiology, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Prabhav Aggarwal
Department of Microbiology, Maulana Azad Medical College, BSZ Marg, New Delhi - 110002
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/mamcjms.mamcjms_44_22

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Background: Timely preparation and presentation of the annual cumulative antibiogram play an important role in the dissemination of an updated susceptibility pattern to clinicians and thus aid in the appropriate choice of antimicrobials for empirical therapy while minimizing adverse effects and resistance. The study aimed to present and analyze the annual AMR data that may be helpful in designing antibiotic policy. Methods: All clinical specimens routinely submitted to the Department of Microbiology from January to December 2021 for bacteriological culture and antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) were included. AST was performed for pathogenic isolates by disc diffusion/agar dilution/broth microdilution methods/VITEK® 2 compact system. All data were entered and analyzed using WHONET 2020 software. Results: A total of 46,629 routine specimens were processed, yielding 5792 non-repeat bacterial isolates. Relatively fewer specimens were received during the first few months when the hospital catered exclusively to COVID-19 patients. The most common bacterial isolates were Escherichia coli (30%), Staphylococcus aureus (21%), Klebsiella sp. (18%), Pseudomonas sp. (10%), Acinetobacter sp. (8%) and Enterococcus sp. (5%). Analysis showed low susceptibility to 3rd generation cephalosporins, fluroquinolones, and cotrimoxazole among Gram negative bacteria. Less than 50% Acinetobacter sp. were carbapenem susceptible. We report high rate of methicillin resistance in S. aureus (74%). Overall susceptibility was much lower in specimens from ICU followed by in-patients and out-patients. Conclusion: Antimicrobial resistance is rapidly assuming the proportions of a pandemic, with several authors calling it “invisible” pandemic. As is evident from the present study, low susceptibilities to all but a few last-resort drugs are leaving few choices for treatment. This mandates effective preparation, distribution, and presentation of annual antibiograms, which will help in formulating hospital antibiotic policy.

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