CDC's National Nosocomial Infections Surveillance (NNIS) Reports Drop in Urinary and Bloodstream Infections in the ICU

Premier Inc. is reporting that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released a summary report from its National Nosocomial Infection Surveillance (NNIS) system updating hospital infection rates with detailed data from January 1992 to June 2004.


A number of trends were noted, including a lower device-associated urinary tract and bloodstream infection rate in intensive care units, compared to previous NNIS reports and changes in antimicrobial resistance in certain pathogens (e.g., an increase in Staphylococcus aureus resistant to methicillin and a reduction in vancomycin-resistant Enterococci, or VRE). The agency also noted lower surgical site infection rates among patients undergoing cholecystectomies, colon operations, gastric operations, and appendectomy when a laparascope or endoscope was used. Additional infection data are presented for intensive care units, high-risk nurseries, and surgical procedures.


The NNIS system was established in 1970 when selected hospitals began reporting their nosocomial surveillance data for aggregation into a national database. The nearly 300 hospitals participating in NNIS system provide general medical-surgical inpatient services to adults or children requiring acute care. All infections are categorized into major and specific sites using standard CDC definitions that include laboratory and clinical criteria. To compare hospitals' rates and ratios with the NNIS data, information must be collected with specific methods described by the NNIS system. The appendices of the report provide information on how to calculate the rates and interpret the percentile information.


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