Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Certification in Infection Control and Improved Outcomes

Certification- The Gold Stadard
Does certification in infection control result in improved outcomes?  A study published in the American Journal of Infection Control would suggest that it does.


The investigators utilized a  2010 survey of California infection control departments. One hundred eighty hospitals provided data (response rate, 54%). Targeted MRSA screening upon admission was reported by the majority of hospitals (87%). The majority of hospitals implemented contact precautions for confirmed drug resistant organisms and C difficile patients; presumptive isolation/contact precautions for patients with pending screens were less frequently implemented. Few infection control policies were associated with lower drug resistant organism rates. Hospitals with a certified infection control director had significantly lower rates of MRSA bloodstream infections (P < .05).
Certification should, in theory, result in higher standards and evidence based practice, with resultant improvements in outcomes. More studies, with larger cohorts, are needed to replicate and confirm the findings. 
More interesting, in my humble opinion, was that neither MRSA active screening nor participation in IHI (Institute for Healthcare Improvement) was uniformly effective in reducing MRSA across all statistical models reported. Intriguing.

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