• Infection Prevention and Safety in Low and Middle Income Countries (S Sengupta, Section Editor)
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Improving Diagnostic and Laboratory Capacity Helps in Control of Infection: an Indian Perspective


Purpose of Review

To appraise the evidence and recommendations from published medical literature about the importance of clinical microbiology laboratory services in the prevention and control of infection in community and in the healthcare setting especially from the Indian perspective.

Recent Findings

Effective infection prevention and control (IPC) is not possible without a functioning microbiology laboratory. Basic microbiology services in a biosafety level 2 facility consisting of light microscopy, blood culture, bacteriology, serology, and tests for certain fungus and mycobacteria (with standard facilities with regard to microscopy, culture) are essential for all tertiary care facilities providing IPC services. In primary and secondary healthcare facilities where microbiology laboratory services are not available in most low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), point of care tests and rapid diagnostic tests which are cost-effective have an important role in IPC and clinical care of patients. Quality assurance of all microbiology tests is important for clinical management and IPC.


Investment in the development of clinical microbiology laboratory infrastructure is essential for IPC and patient care. Surveillance data generated from clinical microbiology services may be used to monitor epidemiological trends of infectious diseases; formulate antimicrobial treatment or prophylactic policies; and assess impact of clinical, antimicrobial stewardship and IPC interventions.

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References and Recommended Reading

Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Sanjay Bhattacharya.

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Dr. Bhattacharya declares that he has no conflicts of interest.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Infection Prevention and Safety in Low and Middle Income Countries

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Bhattacharya, S. Improving Diagnostic and Laboratory Capacity Helps in Control of Infection: an Indian Perspective. Curr Treat Options Infect Dis 12, 112–121 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40506-020-00215-8

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  • Diagnostic services
  • Clinical microbiology
  • Infection prevention and control (IPC)
  • Low- and middle-income countries (LMICs)
  • India