The 24 hospitals, located in 12 states, were among the first to seek out the assessment, Hugenberg said. “It's an opportunity for hospitals to see exactly what policies and procedures need to be put in place,” she explained.
The 195-question tool draws on best practices developed by organizations such as APIC and others, and it covers seven domains, including hand hygiene, surgical-site infections, ventilator-associated pneumonia and multidrug-resistant organisms.
According to the data reviewed by Rhinehart and Hugenberg, the hospitals—whose bed counts ranged from 25 to 533—had a mean score of 75% on overall adherence to best practices. Hand hygiene was one of the strongest areas across hospitals, Rhinehart said, but overall performance was around the 50% mark for catheter-associated urinary tract infections—a result she said was due to poor monitoring, lack of peer review and training, among other factors.
Also, Rhinehart said the assessment uncovered a lot of opportunities to be more proactive in educating physicians about infection-control protocols.
“You can take things form the literature, you can draw on your own experience, there's lots of ways to educate physicians about what's going on and what could be done better,” she said.
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