“In summary, we found about 50% fewer CRBSI cases during the pandemic as compared to the equivalent time period before. This is somewhat unexpected, as there were no changes regarding CVC insertion procedures or care by the participating sites during the time periods. Also, there were no differences in terms of underlying diseases or most CVC characteristics.
As previously shown, male sex, complicated CVC insertion, diagnosis of acute myeloid leukaemia, multiple myeloma or non-Hodgkin lymphoma are independent risk factors for CRBSI at time of CVC insertion (HR 1.59; p = 0.02).8 In the present analysis the number of high-risk CVCs was numerically higher during the pandemic than the before the pandemic (51.1% vs 46.2; p = 0.050) so that even more cases of CRBSI should have been expected. Furthermore, although there were numerically more patients neutropenic during the pandemic, this did not translate into more CRBSI. As stated in Table S1, one centre had a markedly reduced CVC insertion/documentation rate during the pandemic, and the six centres had no similar CRBSI incidences/rates. Therefore, a centre effect cannot be ruled out. However, we found an equal (numerical) reduction of dCRBSI incidence/rate at each centre. Due to fewer CVC insertions/documentations during the pandemic, one might assume this may have influenced the result of our study. Therefore, we have compared the data before and during the pandemic without the mentioned centre. Even without this centre we found a significant decrease in dCRBSI incidence (3.7 vs 1.8/1000 CVC days; p < 0.001) and dCRBSI rate (5.5% vs 2.7%; p = 0.001). Therefore, we think that the change in CVC insertion/documentation rate would not be an explanation for the fewer CRBSIs during the pandemic."Reference:
Schalk E, Schmitt T, Panse J, Fiegle E, Naendrup JH, Schmidt-Hieber M, Böll B, Hentrich M, Teschner D, Mougiakakos D. Central venous catheter-related bloodstream infections in patients with haematological malignancies during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Br J Haematol. 2022 Aug 26. doi: 10.1111/bjh.18442. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36017820.