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To determine whether introduction of a needleless mechanical valve device (NMVD) at a long-term acute care hospital was associated with an increased frequency of catheter-related bloodstream infection (BSI).
For patients with a central venous catheter in place, the catheter-related BSI rate during the 24-month period before introduction of the NMVD, a period in which a needleless split-septum device (NSSD) was being used (hereafter, the NSSD period), was compared with the catheter-related BSI rate during the 24-month period after introduction of the NMVD (hereafter, the NMVD period). The microbiological characteristics of catheter-related BSIs during each period were also compared. Comparisons and calculations of relative risks (RRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were performed using χ2 analysis.
Eighty-six catheter-related BSIs (3.86 infections per 1,000 catheter-days) occurred during the study period. The rate of catheter-related BSI during the NMVD period was significantly higher than that during the NSSD period (5.95 vs 1.79 infections per 1,000 catheter-days; RR, 3.32 [95% CI, 2.88–3.83]; P < .001). A significantly greater percentage of catheter-related BSIs during the NMVD period were caused by gram-negative organisms, compared with the percentage recorded during the NSSD period (39.5% vs 8%; P = .007). Among catheter-related BSIs due to gram-positive organisms, the percentage caused by enterococci was significantly greater during the NMVD period, compared with the NSSD period (54.8% vs 13.6%; P = .004). The catheter-related BSI rate remained high during the NMVD period despite several educational sessions regarding proper use of the NMVD.
An increased catheter-related BSI rate was temporally associated with use of a NMVD at the study hospital, despite several educational sessions regarding proper NMVD use. The current design of the NMVD may be unsafe for use in certain patient populations.
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