October 20-26 is International Infection Prevention Week (IIPW), sponsored by the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC). APIC leads this annual effort to highlight the importance of infection prevention to improve patient outcomes.
In honor of IIPW 2013, APIC is launching the Infection Prevention and You campaign with free online resources to encourage health professionals to spread the word about the dangers of lack of infection prevention in healthcare settings. In addition, research studies on infection prevention are available in APIC’s American Journal of Infection Control. The October 2013 Journal features a study on the quality of publicly reported central line-associated bloodstream infection data in Colorado.
Previous studies in Colorado found significant under-reporting of central line-associated bloodstream infections, which led the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to perform onsite validation visits to assess surveillance practices and retrospective chart reviews of patients in ICUs with positive blood cultures during the first quarter of 2010. They found wide variation in surveillance practices and in application of definition criteria. The study revealed that infections were under-reported by 33 percent and the authors concluded that the Department of Public Health and Environment should validate self-reported healthcare-associated infection data.
An INQRI study out of Johns Hopkins University was the first randomized-control trial to reduce central line associated blood stream infections among ICU patients. The study was conducted in ICUs in 12 states and nurses led the infection control efforts. Measured 19 months after implementation, infection rates were reduced by 81 percent. The project findings are presented in a research brief on RWJF's website. David Thompson and Jill Marsteller led the research.
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