Objective: To test the hypothesis that successful implementation of a care bundle designed to prevent nosocomial airway infection will be associated with decreased incidence of ventilator-associated tracheobronchitis.
Design: Prospective pre- and post interventional.
Setting: PICU at an academic medical center
Patients: : All patients admitted to the PICU who received invasive mechanical ventilation for greater than or equal to 48 hours between March 1, 2009, and December 31, 2011.
Intervention: Multidisciplinary, unit wide implementation of an evidence-based care bundle to prevent ventilator-associated airway infection.
Measurements and main results: There were 725 patients included in the analysis (338 patients preintervention and 387 patients postintervention). Baseline ventilator-associated tracheobronchitis rate in the preintervention period was 3.9 cases per 1,000 ventilator days compared with 1.8 cases per 1,000 ventilator days postintervention (p = 0.04, Fisher exact test). Compared with patients without ventilator-associated tracheobronchitis or ventilator-associated pneumonia, patients with ventilator-associated tracheobronchitis had fewer ventilator-free days in 28 days (4.9 vs 22; p < 0.0001, Mann-Whitney U test) and fewer ICU-free days in 28 days (0.5 vs 19; p < 0.0001, Mann-Whitney U test). These relationships remained significant after adjusting for covariates by multivariable linear regression.
Conclusions: Successful implementation of a care bundle to prevent ventilator-associated infection was associated with decreased incidence of ventilator-associated tracheobronchitis. Development of ventilator-associated tracheobronchitis was independently associated with adverse outcomes in our cohort of pediatric ICU patients.