11 Apr 2013 | Infection Prevention & Control
Associate Health Minister Jo Goodhew has congratulated Hawke’s Bay District Health Board for its participation in a quality and safety project that has reduced bloodstream infections in hospitals.
“Hawke’s Bay’s Intensive Care Unit has had only one CLAB infection the past 18 months, which is a dramatic reduction from the previous five to 10 infections a year,” says Mrs Goodhew, who visited the ICU today.
Hawke’s Bay DHB has been part of a national project being led by the Health Quality & Safety Commission and Ko Awatea, the Centre for Health System Innovation and Improvement at Counties Manukau DHB. The project aims to prevent bloodstream infections that can occur when central line catheters are inserted to administer medications or fluids directly into a patient’s bloodstream. These are called Central Line Associated Bacteraemia or CLAB infections.
“I am very impressed with the clinical leadership at Hawke’s Bay DHB and with the increased focus and attention on preventing bloodstream infections,” Mrs Goodhew says.
The project has been led in Hawke’s Bay ICU by Dr Michael Park and Associate Clinical Nurse Manager Anne Stuart. It involves using standardised checklists to ensure all medical professionals follow the same, best-practice process for inserting a central vein catheter, maintaining the catheter, and looking for any symptoms that could lead to an infection.
Fewer infections reduce complications, pain and suffering for patients, says Dr Park.
“Patients will also spend less time in hospital, which can make a significant reduction to hospital costs.”
Hawke’s Bay DHB has now rolled the initiative out to its radiology department, renal department and operating theatre, and will soon introduce it into its special care baby unit and child health unit.