University of Botswana in collaboration with University of Pennsylvania (Botswana Upenn Partnership) and Ministry of Health and Wellness have launched a research study on the prevalence of multi-drug resistant bacteria in Botswana.
The study aims to find out how often individuals harbour certain antibiotic-resistant bacteria (bacteria that have metamorphosed and are now difficult to treat with commonly prescribed antibiotics), and what might make it more likely for an individual to carry these bacteria.
About 6 300 Batswana are expected to participate in the study that will be conducted in three District Health Management areas of Gaborone, Mochudi and Molepolole.
Speaking at the launch at Sir Ketumile Masire Teaching Hospital on November 29, 2019, Department of Internal Medicine Head, Professor Mosepele Mosepele, said infections caused by antibiotic-resistant bacteria were becoming more common.
Professor Mosepele said many of such infections often developed from bacteria naturally living in the gastrointestinal tract. He also noted that finding out how such bacteria were found the gastrointestinal tract and factors making them more likely, would assist in developing strategies to decrease antibiotics-resistant infections.
“For those who will participate, they will be asked questions about their medical history, medication use, and recent travel,” said Professor Mosepele who is principal investigator. The study will generate epidemiologic data that can be used for the development of optimal management of multi-drug resistant infections in Botswana as well as prevention strategies.
Attending the launch, among others, were Botswana Upenn representatives. District health team representatives from Greater Gaborone, Kweneng and Kgatleng, hospital and clinic. This was to create a buy in across collaborating institutions and Ministry of Health and Wellness.