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Team approach reduces urinary tract infections in rehab patients
Date:6/28/2011

Baltimore, Maryland, June 28, 2011 Nurses, occupational and physical therapists, case managers and education staff, all working together at a 300-bed Nebraska rehabilitation hospital, have successfully implemented a team approach to dramatically reduce infections from urinary catheters, the most prevalent type of infection acquired in healthcare settings.

The interdisciplinary team at Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital in Lincoln, one of the largest free-standing rehabilitation hospitals in the country, reduced catheter associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs) by 89 percent over a 14-month period according to an abstract presented today at the 38th Annual Educational Conference and International Meeting of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC).

Led by infection preventionist Kristina Felix, BA, RN, CRRN, CIC, the team worked to decrease the use of catheters, which are a known risk factor for UTIs, discontinuing their use unless medically necessary. In cases where urinary catheters were required, the team educated nursing staff, therapy staff, family members and patients on proper care to reduce the chance of infection.

When the project was initiated in February 2010 the CAUTI prevalence rate was 36.6 percent, but dropped to 6.6 percent three months later. The original pilot concluded in April 2011.

Felix's team identified underlying reasons for catheter use when medical necessity was in question. Contributing factors included patients admitted to rehabilitation settings from acute care facilities with catheters in place, and patients whose families viewed catheters as a more convenient way to manage incontinence. The task force improved bladder management protocols and standards, balancing the medical requirements of the patient with the need for patients to be infection-free, continually re-assessing the appropriateness for each catheter. They utilized a "decatheterization protoc
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Contact: Liz Garman
egarman@apic.org
202-454-2604
Association for Professionals in Infection Control
Source:Eurekalert

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