A National Implementation Project to Prevent Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infection in Nursing Home Residents

JAMA Intern Med. 2017 Aug 1;177(8):1154-1162. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2017.1689.


Importance: Catheter-associated urinary tract infection (UTI) in nursing home residents is a common cause of sepsis, hospital admission, and antimicrobial use leading to colonization with multidrug-resistant organisms.

Objective: To develop, implement, and evaluate an intervention to reduce catheter-associated UTI.

Design, setting, and participants: A large-scale prospective implementation project was conducted in community-based nursing homes participating in the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Safety Program for Long-Term Care. Nursing homes across 48 states, Washington DC, and Puerto Rico participated. Implementation of the project was conducted between March 1, 2014, and August 31, 2016.

Interventions: The project was implemented over 12-month cohorts and included a technical bundle: catheter removal, aseptic insertion, using regular assessments, training for catheter care, and incontinence care planning, as well as a socioadaptive bundle emphasizing leadership, resident and family engagement, and effective communication.

Main outcomes and measures: Urinary catheter use and catheter-associated UTI rates using National Healthcare Safety Network definitions were collected. Facility-level urine culture order rates were also obtained. Random-effects negative binomial regression models were used to examine changes in catheter-associated UTI, catheter utilization, and urine cultures and adjusted for covariates including ownership, bed size, provision of subacute care, 5-star rating, presence of an infection control committee, and an infection preventionist.

Results: In 4 cohorts over 30 months, 568 community-based nursing homes were recruited; 404 met inclusion criteria for analysis. The unadjusted catheter-associated UTI rates decreased from 6.78 to 2.63 infections per 1000 catheter-days. With use of the regression model and adjustment for facility characteristics, the rates decreased from 6.42 to 3.33 (incidence rate ratio [IRR], 0.46; 95% CI, 0.36-0.58; P < .001). Catheter utilization was 4.5% at baseline and 4.9% at the end of the project. Catheter utilization remained unchanged (4.50 at baseline, 4.45 at conclusion of project; IRR, 0.95; 95% CI, 0.88-1.03; P = .26) in adjusted analyses. The number of urine cultures ordered for all residents decreased from 3.49 per 1000 resident-days to 3.08 per 1000 resident-days. Similarly, after adjustment, the rates were shown to decrease from 3.52 to 3.09 (IRR, 0.85; 95% CI, 0.77-0.94; P = .001).

Conclusions and relevance: In a large-scale, national implementation project involving community-based nursing homes, combined technical and socioadaptive catheter-associated UTI prevention interventions successfully reduced the incidence of catheter-associated UTIs.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Bacteriological Techniques / statistics & numerical data
  • Catheter-Related Infections* / diagnosis
  • Catheter-Related Infections* / epidemiology
  • Catheter-Related Infections* / etiology
  • Catheter-Related Infections* / prevention & control
  • Female
  • Homes for the Aged / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Infection Control / methods
  • Infection Control / organization & administration
  • Long-Term Care / methods
  • Long-Term Care / standards
  • Male
  • Nursing Homes / statistics & numerical data*
  • Preventive Health Services / methods
  • Preventive Health Services / organization & administration
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Urinalysis / methods
  • Urinary Catheterization* / adverse effects
  • Urinary Catheterization* / methods
  • Urinary Catheterization* / standards
  • Urinary Catheters* / adverse effects
  • Urinary Catheters* / statistics & numerical data
  • Urinary Tract Infections* / diagnosis
  • Urinary Tract Infections* / epidemiology
  • Urinary Tract Infections* / etiology
  • Urinary Tract Infections* / prevention & control


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents