Central catheter maintenance bundle cuts CLABSI rates

Using a central catheter maintenance bundle can reduce the risk of central line-associated blood stream infections (CLASBI) in long-term care hospital settings, according to a new study published in the American Journal of Critical Care.

In the study, 30 long-term acute care hospitals (LTACHs) operated by Select Medical volunteered to test a central line catheter maintenance strategy that stressed hygiene and compliance, including how the catheter parts were cleaned and what types of dressings were used.

The bundle included 14 protocols ranging from how often to change dressings to aseptic techniques and assessment documentation. Each LTACH provided additional training to clinical staff to assure competency in the protocols and catheter procedures.

Using the maintenance bundle reduced CLABSI rates by 29 percent, according to a medical records review of more than 6,500 patients admitted before the study and 6,500 patients admitted during the 14 months after the bundle method was implemented.

"Preventing these infections can help reduce complications and the length of stay for other patients,” said Antony Grigonis, PhD, lead researcher and Vice President of Quality and Healthcare Analytics at Select Medical, Mechanicsburg, Pa. “This infection reduction could also translate to a savings of approximately $3.7 million annually for the 30 long-term acute care hospitals studied.”

Additional resource: The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has published safety best practices to avoid CLABSIs, “Making Health Care Safer II: An updated critical analysis of the evidence for patient safety practices.”

Topics: Clinical