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CDC Guidelines Could Cut Bloodstream Infections From Dialysis
Date:5/14/2013

i>Use the skin antiseptic chlorhexidine for catheter exit-site care.
  • Conduct staff training and competency assessments, specifically on catheter care and aseptic technique.
  • Perform hand hygiene and vascular access care audits.
  • Provide feedback to staff on infection and adherence rates.
  • Use antimicrobial ointment on central line exit sites
  • In conducting the study, researchers analyzed data compiled from 17 outpatient dialysis facilities by the National Healthcare Safety Network. The investigators compared infection rates before and after a set of protocols from the CDC were consistently used.

    Following the CDC protocols resulted in a 32 percent reduction in overall bloodstream infections and a 54 percent decrease in vascular access-related bloodstream infections (those related to devices used to access the bloodstream for hemodialysis).

    "Dialysis patients are particularly vulnerable to infections," Dr. Priti Patel, head of CDC's dialysis safety efforts, said in the CDC news release. "We now know it is possible to significantly reduce the infections among dialysis patients by following CDC's checklists and tools. If all dialysis facilities nationwide were using the CDC interventions, we could see dramatic reductions in infections and adverse outcomes in this population."

    Roughly 37,000 bloodstream infections develop each year among dialysis patients with central lines. It's estimated these infections cost $23,000 per hospitalization.

    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has made the prevention of bloodstream infections among dialysis patients a national priority. The dialysis facilities involved in the study tracked the bloodstream infections that developed in their patients. The data compiled in the CDC's National Healthcare Safety Network is now also used by more than 5,000 dialysis facilities nationwide to track and prevent health care-related infections.

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