Electronic Surveillance System Use Still Lagging in Surveyed Hospitals

Less than one-quarter of infection prevention and control departments used an electronic surveillance system (ESS), report researchers who invited 350 acute-care hospitals in California to participate in a Web-based survey to determine ESS implementation, use and satisfaction. Two hundred-seven hospitals participated, providing a description of infection prevention and control department staff, where and how they spent their time on the job, the level of organizational support for infection prevention and control programs, and experience with ESSs.

Grota, et al. (2010) report that facilities that had adequate organizational support predicted presence of an ESS, as did the number of hospital beds. The researchers add that organizational support also positively correlated with infection prevention and control's satisfaction with the ESS. Their research was published in the American Journal of Infection Control.

The rexsearchers conclude that regardless of evidence that ESSs are designed to improve efficiency of data collection and potentially improve patient outcomes, ESSs remain relatively uncommon in hospital infection prevention and control programs. They note, "Based on our findings, organizational support appears to be a major predictor of the presence, use and satisfaction with ESSs in infection prevention and control programs."

Reference: Grota PG, Stone PW, Jordan S, Pogorzelska M and Larson E. Electronic surveillance systems in infection prevention: Organizational support, program characteristics, and user satisfaction. Am J Infect Control. Vol. 38, No. 7. Pages 509-514. September 2010.