The Dust Bunny project applies design research methods coupled with microbiological analyses to address issues of home-based infections in Ghana, particularly those carrying antimicrobial resistance, resulting in a reduction of infection and in positive increase of health outcomes.
Bacteria found in both natural and built environments (e.g. homes, schools, hospitals, etc.) are building up a resistance to drugs -changing to protect themselves against antibiotics. What this means is that in the not-too-distant future, something as simple as a minor cut or infection could become life-threatening. This is such a concern that antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is now considered a global health crisis, far surpassing outbreaks of diseases such as Ebola and as real as climate change. This is even more evident and critical in developing countries in Africa, such as in Ghana, where there are a great number of deaths from infectious diseases.
Within this context, the Dust Bunny project aims at developing an understanding of the home as a source of infection of bacteria, resistant to antibiotics, found and carried by dust. This will be done by exploring hygiene practices across different home environments in Ghana, with the ultimate aim to reduce bacterial infection in the home environment thereby reducing AMR.
Dust Bunny has been funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) call, part of the cross-council AMR initiative, to fund research that will take innovative approaches to tackling antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in indoor and built environments.