Feedback to nursing staff as an intervention to reduce catheter-associated urinary tract infections

Am J Infect Control. 1999 Oct;27(5):402-4. doi: 10.1016/s0196-6553(99)70005-2.


Because of high incidence of catheter-related urinary tract infections (UTIs) in our Veterans Affairs medical center, we began providing nursing staff with unit-specific UTI rates. In our preintervention period, the first quarter of 1995, 38 infections occurred in 1186 catheter-patient-days or 32/1000 catheter-patient-days (95% CI, 22.9-43.7). Thereafter, nursing staff members were provided with a quarterly report with catheter-related UTI rates depicted graphically by unit. In the 18 months after this intervention, the mean UTI rate decreased to 17.4/1000 catheter-patient-days (95% CI, 14.6-20.6, P =.002). We estimated a cost savings of $403,000. We conclude that unit-specific feedback of nosocomial UTI rates to nursing staff is a highly effective method of reducing infection rates and reducing costs associated with nosocomial UTI.

MeSH terms

  • Cross Infection / etiology
  • Cross Infection / prevention & control*
  • Feedback*
  • Hospitals, Veterans
  • Humans
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital*
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Urinary Catheterization / adverse effects*
  • Urinary Tract Infections / economics
  • Urinary Tract Infections / etiology*
  • Urinary Tract Infections / prevention & control*