Changes required in Diagnostic, Management Approach

Posted by: admin on: April 9, 2012

In Pakistan, which is an under developed nation, poverty, malnutrition, poor sanitation systems, lack of safe water supply and overcrowding add to the high prevalence of infectious diseases in children and young adults.

-Team@CMHF

  • According to the demographic profile of Pakistan for the year 2011 and 2012, nearly 36% of the population is residing in urban areas while 66% is living in rural areas but provision of good health care facilities for both urban and rural population has been a challenging task.
  • All these factors worsen the disease prognosis in children suffering from infectious diseases.
  • Assistant Professor of Microbiology at a medical college Dr Humaira Zafar stressed upon the need of changes required in the diagnostic and management approach for various infective illnesses to reduce the morbidity and mortality rates in younger age groups.
  • She added that the illogical use of antibiotics without any proper diagnosis has been an important factor for the emergence of bacterial resistance to many antibiotics.
  • She said that the approach for diagnosis based upon both the serological tests and accurate drug sensitivity results depending upon specific bacterial and mycrobacterial cultures is need of the time.
  • As a result of emerging drug resistance, even with high doses of toxic antibiotics, the infectious illnesses are not being well controlled and the condition has lead Pakistan ranking as eighth amongst the list of countries, which bear 95% burden of infectious diseases.
  • The condition causes 70% deaths in children and younger age groups. In Pakistan every year about 400,000 infants die in first year of their life from diarrhoea and respiratory tract infections, said Dr Humaira.
  • She said that the most common and lethal diseases in Pakistan include diarrhoea, dysentery, respiratory tract infections, typhoid, tuberculosis, cholera, meningitis and viral hepatitis.
  • Serological tests are always considered as a gold standard for the confirmatory diagnosis of any infective illness while if done in combination with culture and sensitivity, both can be very beneficial to identify the drug of choice for an infection, she said and added that both these tests are cost effective and can be done with an average cost of Rs300 to Rs400.
  • Dr Humaira said that general practitioners and clinicians should be well trained and well aware of these international standards for treating any infection and by concentrating the mentioned diagnostic and management approaches, they can play an important key role in reducing the mortality rates among younger age groups.
  • She added that the changes in the diagnostic and management approach will also be a successful way to reduce a great financial burden imposed by prescribing excessive or wrong medicines for the management of these infectious illnesses.
  • Awareness should also be created among general public that should emphasise their doctor to have preliminary serological test and culture done prior to proceeding for any treatment option, she said.
  • She added that drastic and challenging measures are required to meet the millennium development goal of two-thirds reduction in childhood mortality by 2015.
  • Like many developed nations, control of infectious diseases should be at top most health agenda priorities of our country as by giving due attention, the incidence of these preventable infections can be reduced, she said.
  • Dr Humaira suggested that the situation requires serious efforts by the government and civil society to save lives of thousands of children and young adults who are the bright future of the country and are dying only due to mismanagement of these preventable diseases.

For further reading log on to
http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-6-100559-Changes-required-in-diagnostic-management-approach

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