Health care-associated infections (HCAIs) are infections that patients acquire while receiving treatment for medical or surgical conditions and are the most frequent adverse event during care delivery. Its impact can result in prolonged hospital stays, long-term disability, increased resistance of microorganisms to antimicrobial agents, a massive additional financial burden for the health system, high costs for patients and their families, and excess deaths. Every year millions of people are threatened by these diseases.
Of every 100 hospitalized patients at any given time, 7 in developed and 10 in developing countries will acquire healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). Hundreds of millions of patients are affected worldwide each year. Simple and low-cost infection prevention and control measures, such as appropriate hand hygiene, can reduce the frequency of HAIs by more than 50%.
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