Infection-prevention protocols and educational efforts have made a significant dent in the number of central line-associated bloodstream infections in intensive-care patients, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
ICU central line infections decline: CDC
Rates of costly and potentially deadly central line infections among ICU patients have plummeted 58%, from 43,000 in 2001 to 18,000 in 2009, the CDC said. “During these nine years, the decrease represented up to 27,000 lives saved and $1.8 billion in excess healthcare costs,” according to a CDC news release.
The agency credited increased compliance with infection surveillance recommendations and evidence-based protocols such as the ones employed in the Michigan Keystone project, an initiative that succeeded in dramatically lowering the rates of central line-associated bloodstream infections in more than 100 Michigan intensive-care units.
Numbers of central line-associated bloodstream infections remained high in other healthcare settings such as outpatient dialysis clinics, however. Approximately 37,000 such infections occurred in hemodialysis patients in 2008, the CDC said in the report. Additionally, about 23,000 central line infections occurred in non-ICU hospital inpatients.
“The next step is to apply what we've learned from this to other healthcare settings and other healthcare-associated infections, so that all patients are protected,” CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden said in the release.
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