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Surgical patient safety program lowers SSIs by one-third following colorectal operations
Date:7/29/2012

Chicago(July 30, 2012): A surgical patient safety program that combines three componentsaccurate outcome measurement, support of hospital leadership, and engaged frontline providersreduces surgical site infections (SSIs) by 33 percent in patients who undergo colorectal procedures, according to a new study published in the August issue of the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.

SSIs are the most common complication for this high-risk population, occurring in 15 to 30 percent of patients after colorectal operations, according to the study authors. "Colorectal surgical site infections have been tough to prevent. This is a first step to understanding a strategy for prevention. Wound infections are an important risk factor for hospital readmission, increased length-of-stay, and reoperations," said lead study author Elizabeth Wick, MD, FACS, a colorectal surgeon at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and assistant professor of surgery at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore.

The Johns Hopkins Hospital participates in the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP). ACS NSQIP is the leading nationally validated, risk-adjusted, outcomes-based program to measure and improve the quality of surgical care in private sector hospitals. While participating in a pilot program of ACS NSQIP called "Procedure Targeted Module," which monitored outcomes in all patients undergoing colorectal surgery," the colorectal operating team at Johns Hopkins discovered that they had a very high colorectal wound infection rate, approximately 30 percent.

To address the problem, Dr. Wick and her colleagues decided to apply the comprehensive unit-based safety program, known as CUSP, to colorectal wound infections. The five-step quality improvement strategy was designed to bring about patient safety improvements through an interdisciplinary team approach focusing on frontline providers with the goal of ch
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Contact: Sally Garneski
pressinquiry@facs.org
312-202-5409
American College of Surgeons
Source:Eurekalert

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