4 December 2019
The research of Helena Dela, a third-year PhD candidate from the University of Ghana, Legon, and an Afrique One-ASPIRE fellow, concentrates on “Antimicrobial Resistance of Foodborne Pathogens in Stool and Food Samples in Selected health centers in Ghana ”.
For the occasion of World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW) from 18th to 24th November, she initiated a number of activities in aimed at public participation in international campaigns on antimicrobial presence in food and its safety issues. These activities revolved around the three key focus areas of WAAW 2019: the promotion of hygiene through proper hand washing, safe sex and immunization. Helena Dela’s goal was to increase awareness of antimicrobial resistance.
Field visits to two hospitals where her studies on the antimicrobial resistance of foodborne pathogens are underway were organized to help increase awareness of the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance. The hospitals visited were the Maamobi General Hospital and the Kaneshie Polyclinic.
Additionally, during a presentation, the progress of the data collection and laboratory activities for the study was shared during a clinical meeting with the health staff in the two hospitals. Key messages from the WAAW campaign were also shared as well as leaflets designed to address the problem of proper handling of antibiotics by health workers.
Public engagement forms were also distributed to participants (patients, nurses and doctors) to provide them with information on the participants’ reactions.
During this awareness week, special activities were also carried out in markets to reach a wider audience. These included distribution of leaflets on awareness of good sexual practices, and the broadcasting of a radio show to explain antimicrobial resistance.