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Despite Progress, three-quarters of a million infections threaten hospital patients each year

Categories: Antimicrobial Resistance, BSIs, CAUTI, CLABSI, Clostridium difficile, Healthcare-associated infections, Long Term Care (LTC), NHSN, State HAI Prevention

National and State Healthcare-associated Infections Progress Report. This report is based on 2012 data, Published March 2014

National and State Healthcare-associated Infections Progress Report. This report is based on 2012 data, Published March 2014

Despite Progress, three-quarters of a million infections threaten hospital patients each year
National and state data detail threat of healthcare-associated infections and opportunities for further improvements.

CDC released two reports today – one, a New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) article detailing national healthcare-associated infection estimates, and the other an annual report on national and state-specific progress toward U.S. Health and Human Services HAI prevention goals. Together, the reports show that progress has been made in the effort to eliminate infections that commonly threaten hospital patients, but more work is needed to improve patient safety.

The NEJM article updates the burden numbers for healthcare-associated infections in hospitals.  On any given day, 1 of every 25 patients had 1 or more infections related to their hospital stay.   That means about 722,000 infections a year related to medical care.  One of every 9 patients who gets an infection will die during their hospitalization.

This article sounds the alarm about threats we need to address now.  It tells us that lung infections, gut infections, surgical infections and infection from urinary catheters are harming the most patients.

Some of the top pathogens attacking patients are: 

  • C. difficile, or deadly diarrhea,
  • Staph, including the drug-resistant type known as MRSA,
  • a family of germs known as Enterobacteriaceae, that includes CRE the “nightmare bacteria,”

The second report, CDC’s National and State Healthcare-associated Infection Progress Report, includes national and state-by-state summaries of infection types that are commonly required to be reported to CDC. The Progress Report looked at data submitted to CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN), the nation’s healthcare-associated infection tracking system.   On the national level, the report found a:

  • 44 percent decrease in central line-associated bloodstream infections between 2008 and 2012
  • 20 percent decrease in infections related to the 10 surgical procedures tracked in the report between 2008 and 2012
  • 4 percent decrease in hospital-onset MRSA bloodstream infections between 2011 and 2012
  • 2 percent decrease in hospital-onset C. difficile infections between 2011 and 2012
  • 3 percent increase in catheter-associated urinary tract infections

At the federal and state levels, CDC uses this information to find facilities that need help and target resources where they are most needed.

To access both reports and to see the updated healthcare-associated infection data, see CDC’s website: www.cdc.gov/hai.

Watch a new video on Healthcare-Associated Infections.

CDC/CMS Team Up to Provide Consumers Access to Local Hospital Patient Safety Data

Categories: CLABSI, Healthcare-associated infections, NHSN

Daniel Pollock, MD

Daniel Pollock, MD

Author: Dan Pollock
CDC, Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, Surveillance Branch Chief

CMS announced today that its Hospital Compare website now includes central line-associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) data reported from hospital ICUs to CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN). In many places, this is the first time consumers can see how well their local hospitals prevent CLABSIs, one of the most deadly and preventable healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).   

These data reflect hospital performance during the first quarter of 2011.  In many cases, there was not enough data to produce a valid score for a specific hospital.  As new data are added each quarter to Hospital Compare, enough information will be available to report accurate measures for more hospitals.  A view of statewide progress is also available, based on data from hospitals that participate in CMS’s Value-Based Purchasing program.

Consumers are encouraged to research their local hospitals on Hospital Compare and use the information as a discussion point with their healthcare providers.  The information should not be used as the sole factor in choice of hospital. 

Infections in ICUs Plummeting, Too Many Remain in Hospitals and Dialysis Clinics

Categories: Antimicrobial Resistance, BSIs, CLABSI, Dialysis, Gram negatives, Healthcare-associated infections, MRSA, NHSN

Arjun Srinivasan, MD

Arjun Srinivasan, MD

Author – Arjun Srinivasan, MD
CDC’s Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion

As you know, bloodstream infections in patients with central lines can be deadly, killing as many as 1 in 4 patients who gets them. The newest edition of the CDC Vital Signs reports a major decrease in central-line associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs) in intensive care unit (ICU) patients. This is an important triumph for patient safety and brings me a renewed sense of hope toward the elimination of HAIs. It also solidifies an expectation that infection prevention should be a priority in order to improve the safety of patients.

While progress is promising, about 60,000 bloodstream infections in patients with central lines still occurred outside of ICUs and in dialysis centers, according to our report. Much of this is preventable harm. We have to make every effort to ensure patients are protected in all healthcare facilities, all the time. So, how do we do that?
The good news is that everyone can contribute to preventing CLABSIs, no matter where the patient receives care.

Dr. Peter Pronovost on CDC’s Vital Signs Report: Why Success was Possible

Categories: Antimicrobial Resistance, BSIs, CLABSI, Dialysis, Healthcare-associated infections, MRSA, NHSN

Dr. Peter Pronovost on CDC’s Vital Signs Report: Why Success was Possible

Dr. Peter Pronovost on CDC’s Vital Signs Report: Why Success was Possible

Dr. Peter Pronovost, Johns Hopkins University, provides three video commentaries on CDC’s recent Vital Signs report on central line-associated bloodstream infections in hospitals and dialysis facilities. Dr. Pronovost’s commentary is provided below. Click on the video to watch

Transcript: Why was success possible?

Success was possible because many groups partnered and worked collaboratively.

On the national level, the CDC, AHRQ, CMS, and Health and Human Services all worked together.

At the state level, state hospital associations, state health departments and quality improvement organizations united forces.

And within hospitals, ICU clinicians, infection preventionists, and hospital managers worked together.

Dr. Peter Pronovost on CDC’s Vital Signs Report: How we can work together to leverage our success

Categories: Antimicrobial Resistance, BSIs, CLABSI, Dialysis, Healthcare-associated infections, MRSA, NHSN

Dr. Peter Pronovost on CDC’s Vital Signs Report: How we can work together to leverage our success

Dr. Peter Pronovost on CDC’s Vital Signs Report: How we can work together to leverage our success

Dr. Peter Pronovost, Johns Hopkins University, provides three video commentaries on CDC’s recent Vital Signs report on central line-associated bloodstream infections in hospitals and dialysis facilities. Dr. Pronovost’s commentary is provided below. Click on the video to watch.

Transcript: How we can work together to leverage our success

So what can we do:

“US government – work together to mature the science and develop safety programs – programs with clear evidence for best practices, programs with measures that clinicians believe are valid, programs that deliver results, programs that help clinicians believe they can truly make a difference.

States – coordinate efforts, create infrastructure to implement the science, provide technical support to hospitals seeking to measure and reduce infections, and ensure that all hospitals that have not eliminated CLABSI participate in the national program called On the CUSP: Stop BSI.

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