21 Aug 2017

WHO tells Fiji to improve medical supply chain

4:42 pm on 21 August 2017

The World Health Organisation has recommended a strengthening of the medical supply chain as part of measures to fight the outbreak of a superbug in Fiji's main hospital.

Antibiotic testing in a petri dish (file photo)

A petri dish used for testing antibiotic resistance Photo: AFP / ABO / Science Photo Library

Six babies, who died this year in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit at Colonial War Memorial Hospital, had been infected with Acinetobacter baumannii.

The WHO's Corinne Capuano told the ABC that improving the supply chain would prevent single-use equipment from being reused.

"There is a long list of recommendations, but basically some of them are related to the supply system to ensure that the staff have enough equipment and material they can then use that is properly cleaned," she said.

"So one is on the supply system, the other one more on the training of staff to make sure they understand the importance of infection prevention practices and good practices."

The Fiji Ministry of Health has now assigned an officer to liaise between the hospital and the Pharmaceutical Service, which is responsible for the purchase and distribution of medical supplies.