Disinfection caps successful in CLABSI prevention

06/11/2014
Photo: Hand of a hospital patient with a central line

Using alcohol impregnated caps significantly decreases the number of CLABSI; ©photonewman/ panthermedia.net

Thanks to the simple use of an alcohol-impregnated cap, Loyola University Medical Center achieved a 68 percent decrease in the overall number of central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI) over a 12-month period.

A two-year study compared the use of disinfection caps to an intense scrub-the-hub intervention to standard care. Scrub-the-hub refers to cleaning catheter connector hubs and injection ports with alcohol for the recommended 15 seconds before accessing the central line, a catheter placed in a large vein to deliver medicine and liquids during hospitalization.

"Loyola discovered that 80 percent of infections occurring in the scrub-the-hub arm were related to not scrubbing the hub for the required full 15 seconds," says Marcelina M. Wawrzyniak, MSN, RN, study author and infection preventionist at Loyola University Medical Center. "Substituting the use of alcohol-impregnated caps was very well-received by staff due to the ease of use. Implementation of the caps sustained a reduction in CLABSI over the long term."

The cost of CLABCI is estimated at 45,814 dollar per infection, according to a recent analysis. "Loyola went from 59 to just 23 CLABSIs within a 12-month period after using the alcohol caps, reducing hospital costs by over 1 million dollars," says Jorge Parada, MD, MPH, FACP, FIDSA, professor of medicine at Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine. "Alcohol impregnated caps were an added cost but documentation of the increased patient safety coupled with the reduction in CLABSI costs made it easy to receive administration approval."

MEDICA.de; Source: Layola Medicine