Catheter maintenance bundle effectively slashes CLABSI rates: 5 study findings

Healthcare providers struggling with central line-associated bloodstream infections may want to consider implementing a central catheter maintenance bundle, which was recently proven to reduce CLABSIs in a study published in the American Journal of Critical Care.

The bundle tested in the study was developed by a quality improvement team from Select Medical, an acute and post-acute care provider. The team implemented the bundle — which is based on the CDC's infection prevention guidelines — in 30 long-term acute care hospitals.

Elements of the intervention include the mandatory use of alcohol-based central catheter caps and chlorhexidine gluconate dressings, education courses for clinical and bundle compliance checklists.

Highlighted below are five things to know about the study and its findings.

1. All total, the researchers analyzed medical records for 6,660 patients discharged during the 14 months prior to the study and 6,559 patients discharged after implementation of the bundle.

2. The study revealed a 29 percent decrease in the CLABSI standardized infection rate following the implementation of the central catheter maintenance bundle.

3. The intervention was also associated with a mean reduction of 4.5 CLABSIs per hospital over the 14 months post implementation.

4. Not only did the bundle result in a considerable reduction in the overall mean CLABSI rate, with attention to compliance, it resulted in sustained CLABSI reduction for 14 months.

5. The researchers estimate the infection reduction could translate to roughly $3.7 million in annual savings for the 30 long-term acute care hospitals studied.

"Our results encourage the development and implementation of similar bundles as effective infection reduction strategies in [long-term acute care hospitals]," said lead author Antony Grigonis, PhD, vice president of quality and healthcare analytics at Select Medical.



More articles on CLABSIs:
ICU-acquired CLABSIs linked with higher risk of inpatient mortality
Infographic highlights proper disinfection practices for CLABSI prevention
17-hospital study augments best practices to reduce CLABSIs in pediatric patients

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