Occupying C. diff-contaminated hospital areas significantly increases infection risk

When a patient is in a hospital area previously occupied by someone with a Clostridium difficile infection, that patient is much more likely to develop a C. diff infection, according to a study presented at Hospital Medicine 2017.

Hospital Medicine 2017 is the annual meeting of the Society of Hospital Medicine in Las Vegas.

Sign up for our FREE E-Weekly for more coverage like this sent to your inbox!

Researchers developed a methodology using EHR data to map potential C. diff transmission. They analyzed patient encounters in a health system from 2013 through 2015, which included 86,648 hospitalizations. During the hospitalizations, there were 434,745 patient location changes.

The researchers classified a patient as "exposed to C. diff" if they occupied a space in the hospital that had been occupied by a patient with C. diff in prior 24 hours. Researchers followed both exposed and unexposed patients for 60 days. Additionally, researchers calculated the odds ratio for developing C. diff if exposed in comparison to unexposed individuals who passed through the same contaminated location.

The study shows that exposure to C. diff in the ED was significantly associated with the development of the infection within the next 60 days. Also, researchers found that getting a CT scan in the ED within 24 hours after a patient with C. diff had used the scanner was associated with increased odds of developing an infection in comparison to a patient getting a CT scan when the machine was not contaminated.

"Our novel data analytic strategy may be widely applicable for infection control quality improvement at other institutions and for other infectious diseases," study authors note.

Copyright © 2024 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars