Toward eliminating catheter-associated urinary tract infections in an academic health center

J Surg Res. 2014 Dec;192(2):280-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jss.2014.07.045. Epub 2014 Jul 24.

Abstract

Background: Eliminating catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI) is at the forefront of quality improvement and cost reduction for payers and hospitals alike. Herein we describe a double-focused strategy to eliminate CAUTI's on a surgical oncology unit over the course of 24 mo.

Methods: CAUTI's were tracked on a 30-bed surgical oncology unit 12 mo before and 12 mo after implementation of specific measures aimed at (1) decreasing utilization and (2) increasing catheter bundle and hand hygiene compliance. A policy of early Foley catheter removal was implemented. Univariate analyses were performed comparing nominal and numerical variables between the pre- and post-intervention groups.

Results: The pre- and post-intervention groups comprised of 1376 and 1467 patients, respectively. Postintervention, there was a significant decrease in both total Foley (P = 0.02) and patient (P = 0.03) days. This resulted in a significant reduction in utilization rate from 0.28 to 0.24, (P < 0.0001) and median CAUTI rate from 4.6 to 0.0 (P = 0.03). Reduced CAUTIs were associated with significant improvements in monthly bundle compliance at ≥95% (75% versus 17%, P = 0.003) and hand hygiene compliance at ≥95% (92% versus 58%, P = 0.05). Among our thoracic epidural cohort (n = 11), three patients (27%) required reinsertion for urinary retention. None of these epidural patients were diagnosed with a CAUTI.

Conclusions: Although not eliminated entirely, CAUTIs on our unit were significantly reduced through decreased utilization and improved compliance to institutional patient safety measures. Adoption of these strategies to other inpatient units would not only improve patient safety but also result in significant cost savings.

Keywords: CAUTI; Foley catheter; Reinsertion; Thoracic epidural.

MeSH terms

  • Academic Medical Centers / standards
  • Gastrointestinal Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Hand Hygiene / methods
  • Hand Hygiene / standards
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Infection Control / methods*
  • Infection Control / standards
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Quality Improvement
  • Tertiary Care Centers / standards
  • Urinary Catheterization / adverse effects*
  • Urinary Tract Infections / etiology
  • Urinary Tract Infections / prevention & control*
  • Urogenital Neoplasms / surgery*