CHG bathing in ICU
Background: Critical care nurses take care of patients with complicated, comorbid, and compromised conditions. These patients are at risk for health care-associated infections, which affect patients’ lives and health care systems in various ways.
Objective: To gauge the impact of routinely bathing patients with 4% chlorhexidine gluconate solution on the incidence of health care-associated infections in a medical-surgical intensive care unit and a postoperative telemetry unit; to outline the framework for a hospital-wide presurgical chlorhexidine gluconate bathing program and share the results.
Methods: A standard bathing protocol using a 4% chlorhexidine gluconate solution was developed. The protocol included time studies, training, monitoring, and surveillance of health care-associated infections.
Results: Consistent patient bathing with 4% chlorhexidine gluconate was associated with a 52% reduction in health care-associated infections in a medical-surgical intensive care unit. The same program in a postoperative telemetry unit yielded a 45% reduction in health care-associated infections.
Conclusion: A comprehensive daily 4% chlorhexidine gluconate bathing program can be implemented with standardized protocols and detailed instructions and can significantly reduce the incidence of health care-associated infections in intensive care unit and non-intensive care unit hospital settings.
Chapman L, Hargett L, Anderson T, Galluzzo J, Zimand P. Chlorhexidine Gluconate Bathing Program to Reduce Health Care-Associated Infections in Both Critically Ill and Non-Critically Ill Patients. Crit Care Nurse. 2021 Oct 1;41(5):e1-e8. doi: 10.4037/ccn2021340. PMID: 34595499.