Patients with end-stage renal disease undergoing haemodialysis are at high risk of nosocomial blood-stream infection (BSI), but data on the associated costs in this patient population are not available. Therefore, we conducted a retrospective matched (1:2) case-control study of such patients undergoing haemodialysis from January 1998 to December 1998 in a medical centre in southern Taiwan to determine the excess length of hospital stay, attributable mortality, and the extra cost caused by nosocomial BSI. The excess length of hospital stay was 30 days for cases vs. 16 days for controls (P<0.001), the mortality rate was 26.3% for cases vs. 0 for controls (P=0.003) (attributable mortality being 26.3%), and the median of overall costs was 131,584 dollars NT for cases vs. 65,282 dollars NT for controls (P<0.001). Based on these findings, we believe that an effective programme to minimize nosocomial BSI in this patient population would greatly reduce their medical and economic burdens.
Copyright 2002 The Hospital Infection Society.