Simulation Training Linked to Decreased Catheter Infection

New research shows that simulation-based training in sterile techniques during central vein catheterization (CVC) is associated with decreased rate of catheter-related bloodstream infection (CRBSI). Over one year, researchers from St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Center in New York randomly assigned 47 second- and third-year internal medicine residents to simulation-based training plus video training or video training alone, with a follow-up period to examine CRBSI six months later.

During the follow-up period, a simulation-based training program in sterile techniques during CVC was implemented in the medical intensive care unit (MICU). Residents' scores in sterile techniques and CRBSI rates were compared with residents in the surgical intensive care unit (SICU) who did not receive simulation training. Baseline scores from both groups were 12.5 to 13 out of a maximum score of 24. After training, the median score for the simulation group was 22, compared with 18 for the video training-only group.

During follow-up, there was a 70 percent reduction in the incidence of CRBSI in the postintervention MICU compared with the preintervention MICU and the postintervention SICU. Researchers conclude that simulation-based training is superior to traditional training and video training, and it should be routinely used to reduce iatrogenic risk. This research was published in the January issue of Chest, the journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Reference: Chest 2011; 139(1):80-87.

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