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Nation's Top Healthcare Organizations Announce Strategies to Prevent Deadly Healthcare-Associated Infections : Strategies emphasize practical implementation in acute healthcare settings
Date:10/8/2008

For the first time, five leading healthcare organizations have published practical, science-based strategies to help prevent the six most important healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).

WASHINGTON (Business Wire EON) October 8, 2008 -- Preventing HAIs is one of the nation's highest priority public health and patient safety goals. HAIs affect nearly 2 million Americans annually, with 90,000 deaths and up to $6.5 billion in extra costs, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Hospital infections cost Americans between $4.5 and $6.5 billion in extra healthcare costs annually.

"People should expect healthcare that is safe and free from additional complications," said P.J. Brennan, M.D., head of the federal Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC) and President of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA). "This effort will benefit everyone who walks in the hospital door because these strategies identify what hospitals should be doing based on the latest scientific evidence and provide performance measures to ensure accountability."

The Compendium of Strategies to Prevent Healthcare-Associated Infections in Acute Care Hospitals was produced by SHEA and the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), in partnership with the American Hospital Association (AHA); the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, Inc. (APIC); and The Joint Commission, which accredits more than 15,000 U.S. healthcare organizations. Infection control experts at SHEA and IDSA will assume responsibility for updating these strategies as science evolves.

"Healthcare providers' goal is to offer the best and safest patient care possible. Not all HAIs are preventable, but it is imperative that we implement practices that we know are effective to prevent as many of these infecti
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