To identify socioeconomic factors associated with antimicrobial resistance of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, and Escherichia coli in Chilean hospitals (2008–2017).
We reviewed the scientific literature on socioeconomic factors associated with the emergence and dissemination of antimicrobial resistance. Using multivariate regression, we tested findings from the literature drawing from a longitudinal dataset on antimicrobial resistance from 41 major private and public hospitals and a nationally representative household survey in Chile (2008–2017). We estimated resistance rates for three priority antibiotic–bacterium pairs, as defined by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development; i.e., imipenem and meropenem resistant P. aeruginosa, cloxacillin resistant S. aureus, and cefotaxime and ciprofloxacin resistant E. coli.
Evidence from the literature review suggests poverty and material deprivation are important risk factors for the emergence and transmission of antimicrobial resistance. Most studies found that worse socioeconomic indicators were associated with higher rates of antimicrobial resistance. Our analysis showed an overall antimicrobial resistance rate of 32.5%, with the highest rates for S. aureus (40.6%) and the lowest for E. coli (25.7%). We found a small but consistent negative association between socioeconomic factors (income, education, and occupation) and overall antimicrobial resistance in univariate (p < 0.01) and multivariate analyses (p < 0.01), driven by resistant P. aeruginosa and S. aureus.
Socioeconomic factors beyond health care and hospital settings may affect the emergence and dissemination of antimicrobial resistance. Preventing and controlling antimicrobial resistance requires efforts above and beyond reducing antibiotic consumption.