Reducing blood culture contamination in an emergency department

0

“Contaminated blood cultures (BC) generate avoidable costs and prolong hospital stays. To measure our hospital’s performance against the recommended standard of <3% BC contamination, we performed a prospective study.” Robertson et al (2015).

Reference:

Robertson, P., Russell, A. and Inverarity, D.J. (2015) The effect of a quality improvement programme reducing blood culture contamination on the detection of bloodstream infection in an emergency department. Journal of Infection Prevention. 16(2), p.82-87.

Abstract:

Background: Contaminated blood cultures (BC) generate avoidable costs and prolong hospital stays. To measure our hospital’s performance against the recommended standard of <3% BC contamination, we performed a prospective study.

Methods: We prospectively determined the frequency of contaminated and genuinely positive BC hospital-wide over seven months.

Results: Overall, 73 of 1,829 blood cultures reviewed were contaminated (4.0%). However, distribution of contamination was not uniform. Finding a consistently higher incidence of contamination (11.7%) in our emergency department (ED) than elsewhere in the hospital (2.5%), we adopted a collaborative quality improvement strategy targeted to the ED. A combination of education, modified BC packs and regular feedback of BC results was associated with a significant reduction in contamination (7.4%, p=0.01) over the next six months. Our data suggests that contaminated BC were more likely to have been taken during regular day time hours (odds ratio (OR) 2.7, p=0.012), rather than overnight and were not associated with influxes of new junior medical staff. We found no evidence that the incidence of true bloodstream infection (12.8%) diagnosed by our ED was adversely affected by our intervention (10.7%, p=0.35).

Conclusions: Using a simple and inexpensive collaborative intervention we reduced BC contamination without adversely affecting the detection of genuine BSI

Thank you to our partners for supporting IVTEAM

Share.

Comments are closed.

Free Email Updates
Join 5.5K IVTEAM members. Subscribe now and be the first to receive all the latest free updates from IVTEAM!
100% Privacy. We don't spam.