Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Special Outpatient Surgery Edition - Infection Control - May 2018

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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4 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • M A y 2 0 1 8 Y ou prep skin, disinfect surfaces, decontami- nate instruments, warm patients and administer antibiotics, and yet avoidable surgical site infections contin- ue to occur at incredible cost to patients and the healthcare system. Infected patients experience personal suffer- ing, pain, loss of income, reduced quality of life and possibly even death. Individual surgical site infections cost about $20,785 to treat, making them the third most costly healthcare-acquired infection (HAI) behind only central line- associated bloodstream infections ($45,814) and ventilator-associated pneumonia ($40,144), according to a recent study in JAMA Internal Medicine (osmag.net/otFYS2). Readmission and extended lengths of stay are driving the exorbitant costs of SSIs, and those costs are only increasing. Prolonged hospital- izations also double the risk of mortality in patients with SSIs, and that risk is even greater for the elderly, who are becoming a larger segment of the patient population. The JAMA study says the annual economic burden of surgical, central line, Clostridium difficile, ventilator-associated and catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs) is $9.8 billion, with SSIs contributing the most (33.7%) to the overall expense. Treatment of CAUTIs cost less than 1% of the total burden, yet much more energy and effort has been No More Excuses It's time to reconsider the considerable costs of avoidable SSIs. On Point Charles H. Cook, MD, FACS, FCCM • DOWN TO ZERO New thinking is needed to eliminate the risks of surgical infections.

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