California Department of Public Health Issues Report on HAI Data

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The California Department of Public Health recently released a report summarizing healthcare-associated infection (HAI) data collected from California's hospitals in 2011. Along with these new reports, California has updated and expanded its interactive map of HAIs for consumers.

The new report provides data from California's hospitals for the following types of infections: Central-line associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI); Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE) bloodstream infections; and surgical site infections (SSI).

Highlights from the report include:

- Central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI) – This is the second year this data has been gathered and grouped by locations where patients with similar medical conditions receive similar medical care. CLABSI decreased by 10 percent from 2010 to 2011, from 3,519 cases to 3,163 cases.

While there was an overall downward trend in 2011, there were incidents where CLABSI rates were reported higher than the state average. The California Department of Public Health continues to work with hospitals to explore opportunities to improve CLABSI surveillance and prevention.

- Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE) – This is the second year this data has been gathered through CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network. However, there is currently no method for adjusting these rates to account for different risk factors in patient populations.

Infection rates of these types decreased or remained the same among seven kinds of hospitals: community, major teaching, pediatric, long term acute care, rehabilitation, critical access and prison. However, the average rate among 22 long-term care hospitals increased. California Department of Public Health will work with long-term care hospitals to explore opportunities to prevent MRSA and VRE BSI.

- Surgical site infections (SSI) – This is the first calendar year report of this category of infections. This data represents an important step toward reporting these infections.

All California hospitals are required to report infection data electronically through the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN).

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