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In >100,000 observations across Swiss acute-care hospitals, hand hygiene (HH) adherence significantly increased during the first coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) wave. However, despite persisting COVID-19 activity, HH adherence returned to prepandemic levels over a 2-year observation period. These results indicate that training and support remains challenging.
As of December 2021, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has claimed millions of deaths and caused disruptions in health systems around the world. The short- and long-term effects of COVID-19 on antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which was already a global threat before the pandemic, are manifold and complex. In this expert review, we summarize how COVID-19 might be affecting AMR in the short term (by influencing the key determinants antibiotic use, infection control practices and international/local mobility) and which additional factors might play a role in the long term. Whereas reduced outpatient antibiotic use in high-income countries, increased awareness for hand hygiene, and reduced mobility have likely mitigated the emergence and spread of AMR in the short term, factors such as overuse of antibiotics in COVID-19 patients, shortage of personal protective equipment, lack of qualified healthcare staff, and patient overcrowding have presumably facilitated its propagation. Unsurprisingly, international and national AMR surveillance data for 2020 show ambiguous trends. Although disruptions in antibiotic stewardship programs, AMR surveillance and research might promote the spread of AMR, other developments could prove beneficial to the cause in the long term. These factors include the increased public awareness for infectious diseases and infection control issues, the strengthening of the One Health perspective as outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the unprecedented number of international research collaborations and platforms. These factors could even serve as leverage and provide opportunities to better combat AMR in the future.
In this prospective cohort of 1,012 Swiss hospital employees, 3 different assays were used to screen serum for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. Seropositivity was 1%; the positive predictive values of the lateral-flow immunoassay were 64% (IgG) and 13% (IgM). History of fever and myalgia most effectively differentiated seropositive and seronegative participants.
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