While CLABSI rates fall, other HAIs persist

Hospitals in the U.S. have made striking progress in reducing certain types of infections, like central line-associated bloodstream infections, but still have room for improvement on other types of infections, like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bloodstream infections and Clostridium difficile infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC recently released its annual National and State Healthcare-associated Infection Progress Report, which summarizes data submitted to the agency's National Healthcare Safety Network.

On the national level, hospitals have been more successful at eliminating certain infections than others. The report found the following:

  • 46 percent decrease in CLABSIs between 2008 and 2013
  • 19 percent decrease in surgical site infections related to 10 select procedures between 2008 and 2013
  • 6 percent increase in catheter-associated urinary tract infections since 2009
  • 8 percent decrease in MRSA bloodstream infections from 2011 through 2013
  • 10 percent decrease in C. diff infections between 2011 and 2013

"Hospitals have made real progress to reduce some types of healthcare-associated infections — it can be done," said Tom Frieden, MD, the director of the CDC. "The key is for every hospital to have rigorous infection control programs to protect patients and healthcare workers, and for healthcare facilities and others to work to reduce the many types of infections that haven't decreased enough."

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