"This study aimed to develop and validate fully-automated surveillance algorithms for CVC-BSI" Karmefors Idvall et al (2024).
Automated algorithms for CLABSI surveillance


Background: Continuous surveillance for healthcare-associated infections such as central venous catheter-related bloodstream infections (CVC-BSI) is crucial for prevention. However, traditional surveillance methods are resource-intensive and prone to bias. This study aimed to develop and validate fully-automated surveillance algorithms for CVC-BSI.

Methods: Two algorithms were developed using electronic health record data from 1000 admissions with a positive blood culture (BCx) at Karolinska University Hospital from 2017: (1) Combining microbiological findings in BCx and CVC cultures with BSI symptoms; (2) Only using microbiological findings. These algorithms were validated in 5170 potential CVC-BSI-episodes from all admissions in 2018-2019, and results extrapolated to all potential CVC-BSI-episodes within this period (n = 181,354). The reference standard was manual record review according to ECDC’s definition of microbiologically confirmed CVC-BSI (CRI3-CVC).

Results: In the potential CVC-BSI-episodes, 51 fulfilled ECDC’s definition and the algorithms identified 47 and 49 episodes as CVC-BSI, respectively. Both algorithms performed well in assessing CVC-BSI. Overall, algorithm 2 performed slightly better with in the total period a sensitivity of 0.880 (95%-CI 0.783-0.959), specificity of 1.000 (95%-CI 0.999-1.000), PPV of 0.918 (95%-CI 0.833-0.981) and NPV of 1.000 (95%-CI 0.999-1.000). Incidence according to the reference and algorithm 2 was 0.33 and 0.31 per 1000 in-patient hospital-days, respectively.

Conclusions: Both fully-automated surveillance algorithms for CVC-BSI performed well and could effectively replace manual surveillance. The simpler algorithm, using only microbiology data, is suitable when BCx testing adheres to recommendations, otherwise the algorithm using symptom data might be required. Further validation in other settings is necessary to assess the algorithms’ generalisability.


Karmefors Idvall M, Tanushi H, Berge A, Nauclér P, van der Werff SD. The accuracy of fully-automated algorithms for the surveillance of central venous catheter-related bloodstream infection in hospitalised patients. Antimicrob Resist Infect Control. 2024 Feb 5;13(1):15. doi: 10.1186/s13756-024-01373-w. PMID: 38317207.