High rate of hospital infections

One in every 10 patients hospitalised in Portugal contracts an infection, according to a recent study by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), making it one of the countries with the highest infection rate at 10.8%.

On a European level, one in every 18 patients hospitalised are affected. The ECDC has also discovered that in a total of 30 European countries, 80,000 patients are infected every day.

Marc Sprenger, the director of the centre, classifies the issue as a “serious public health problem” that can be minimised by more effective prevention measures and a more prudent use of antibiotics.

The researchers in charge of the study, which included nearly 1,000 hospitals, stressed that although some of these infections are easily treated others are more serious, forcing the patients to remain hospitalised for longer periods and, in some cases, be subject to surgery.

Infections are more frequent among patients in intensive care, where at least 19.5% of European patients have been contaminated. The most common are respiratory problems such as pneumonia, followed by urinary and blood circulation issues.