Clostridia difficile enteritis is a major preventable cause of hospital-acquired morbidity and mortality.
Clostridia difficile rates have been climbing in U.S. Hospitals over recent years. St. Mark’s is also facing this challenge. We identify 6-17 new c. difficile infections in our hospital monthly.
Studies show that the incidence of c. difficile nosocomial infection can be effectively reduced by:
- Minimizing the use of antibiotics with broader spectrum and/or longer duration than clinically indicated
See Antibiotic Stewardship.
- Early & reliable diagnosis using rapid PCR techniques
St. Mark’s uses PCR-NAAT testing.
- Immediate isolation of infected patients
We are 95% reliable on audit.
- Strict use of gown and gloves for ALL patient contact
Audits show we need to be more consistent.
- Effective notification of infected status at patient transfer
- Special protocol cleaning of patient rooms
St. Mark’s employs a special cleaning protocol on patient discharge or transfer for rooms occupied by c. difficile infected patients using Viracept, an EPA-registered c. difficile sporicidal disinfectant.
- Testing the efficacy of room cleaning process using ATP detection methods
St. Mark’s uses ATP detection to verify room cleaning. The lowest levels are found immediately after room cleaning, but the levels rise the longer a room is not in use, suggesting that staff may be touching surfaces in previously cleaned rooms. We are focusing particular attention to ATP bioburden levels on our operating room surfaces, and on assuring appropriate regular cleaning of reuse items such as straps, scarves, headlamps and magnifiers.
- Ultraviolet light disinfection (Xenex technology)
St. Mark’s uses the Xenex robot for pulsed xenon full-spectrum UV light disinfection (www.xenex.com) at patient discharge or transfer from 3 West and uses this technology for after-hour disinfection of all operating rooms five nights a week.
- Patient Safety Director Appointed
- End-Tidal CO2 for PCA Monitoring
- Oxygen Weaning Protocol
- Adding MSSA Pre-Operative Screening
- Remarkable Handwashing Training
- Assault on Central Line Infections
- Reducing Catheter-Associated UTI
- War on Clostridia Difficile
- We Need Your Help to Prevent Infection
- Antibiotic Stewardship
- BioFire Respiratory Panel Available
- From the Medical Executive Committee
- PICC Line / Mid-Line Team
- Voices Heard / Improvements Made
- Advanced Practice Professionals in OR
- VTE Reduction in Hip & Knee Program
- New Medical Staff Appointments
- Retirements / Resignations