Actionable Patient Safety Solutions (APSS)

Central Line-associated blood stream infections (CLABSI)
22E Central Line-Associated Bloodstream Infections

The central line-associated bloodstream infections APSS Blueprint outlines actionable steps healthcare organizations should take to successfully implement and sustain improvements in order to reduce central line-related morbidity and mortality. Actionable steps to improve central line-associated bloodstream infection rates and summaries of available evidence-based practice protocols are included:

  • Leadership checklist guide to determine whether current evidence-based guidelines are being followed in your organization
  • Performance improvement plan to follow if improvements are necessary
  • Clinical workflow to prevent central line-associated bloodstream infections across the continuum
  • Knowledge base on early detection and treatment of central line-associated bloodstream infections
  • How to educate patients and family members about central line-associated bloodstream infection prevention, recognition, and treatment
  • Central line-associated bloodstream infection resource guide
  • Guidance on how to measure outcomes

The Blueprint is revised annually and is available free of charge on our website.

Hospitals who make a formal commitment to improve central line-associated bloodstream infection rates and share their successes on the PSMF website have access to an additional level of consulting services.

The Problem

A Central Line-Associated Bloodstream Infection (CLABSI) in one patient can result in as much as $56,000 for payers, due to a mortality rate of 14-40% and an average prolonged length of stay of between 7.5 and 25 days (Ranji et al., 2007). Researchers estimate that process change and the use of technology to reduce CLABSI can save up to $2.7 billion per year while significantly improving quality and safety (Scott, 2009). The implementation of a CLABSI bundle has been shown to reduce cases by up to 74% (IHI, 2012). Yet, translating the best practices, like those in the CLABSI bundle, into reliable frontline processes is immensely challenging due to human factors in an ever-changing environment.

The Cost

With between three and five million central venous catheters placed into patients in the US and approximately 250,000 placed in the UK annually, the CLABSI risk is significant (Ranji et al., 2007; The Joint Commission, 2012). Annually, this translates to approximately 80,000 ICU CLABSI cases and 250,000 total cases with over 25,000 related deaths in the US alone (Herzer et al., 2014; The Joint Commission, 2012). These preventable bloodstream infections extend hospitalization by approximately seven days (IHI, 2012).

The Solution

Many healthcare organizations have successfully implemented and sustained improvements and reduced death from CLABSI. These organizations have focused on implementing a CLABSI “bundle”. This document provides a blueprint that outlines the actionable steps your organization should take to successfully reduce
CLABSI and summarizes the available evidence-based practice protocols. This document is revised annually and is always available free of charge on our website. Hospitals that make a formal commitment to improve CLABSI and share their success on the PSMF website have access to an additional level of consulting services.

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