Prevention of Late Onset Sepsis and Central-line Associated Blood Stream Infection in Preterm Infants

Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2016 Apr;35(4):401-6. doi: 10.1097/INF.0000000000001019.


Aim: Late onset sepsis (LOS) and central-line associated blood stream infection (CLA-BSI) contribute toward the mortality and morbidity in prematurely born infants. The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of hospital-wide and unit-based interventions on LOS and CLA-BSI in infants born at <32 weeks gestation.

Methods: Intensive care, high dependency days and catheter days were obtained from the unit database and blood culture results from a microbiology laboratory database. Poisson regression was used to evaluate the effects of interventions on LOS and CLA-BSI.

Results: Quarterly rates of LOS reduced from 26.1 to 2.9 per 1000 intensive care, high dependency days and CLA-BSI from 31.6 to 4.3 per 1000 catheter days between 2007 and 2012. Appointment of a hospital specialist vascular device nurse, a change in the mode of administration of vancomycin, standardization of the hospital skin and hub disinfection policy and the introduction of a venous infusion phlebitis scoring system were associated with a reduction of LOS to 55% (95% confidence interval: 40-74%) and CLA-BSI 45% (95% confidence interval: 33-61%) of pre-intervention levels. The standardization of the neonatal unit policy for skin disinfection and a move to a new building were associated with reductions of LOS to 64% (47-87%) and 54% (34-88%), respectively, and aseptic no touch technique for infusion access with CLA-BSI to 53% (37-75%) of pre-intervention levels.

Conclusion: A multifaceted approach involving changes in antimicrobial and skin disinfection policy, training for aseptic no touch technique and surveillance resulted in sustained reduction in LOS and CLA-BSI rates.

MeSH terms

  • Bacteremia
  • Catheter-Related Infections / epidemiology
  • Catheter-Related Infections / prevention & control*
  • Central Venous Catheters / adverse effects*
  • Cross Infection*
  • Early Medical Intervention / methods
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Seasons
  • Sepsis / epidemiology
  • Sepsis / etiology*
  • Sepsis / prevention & control*