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The National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI) definition was revised as of January 2015 to exclude funguria and lower bacteriuria levels. We evaluated the effect of the CAUTI definition change on NHSN-defined central-line–associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) outcomes.
We compared CAUTI and CLABSI NHSN-defined outcomes for calendar years 2014 and 2015 in the adult intensive care units (ICUs) of a single large health system. Changes in the event rates, the associated organisms, and the standardized infection ratio (SIR) were evaluated.
The study included 137 adult ICUs from 65 hospitals. The CAUTI SIR dropped from 1.04 in 2014 to 0.58 in 2015 (−44.2%), while the CLABSI SIR increased from 0.36 in 2014 to 0.47 in 2015 (+30.6%). CAUTI rates dropped 44.8% from 2.09 to 1.15 events per 1,000 device days (P<.001). Gram-positive–associated CAUTI rates dropped 36.7% from 0.34 to 0.22 per 1,000 device days (P=.007). CLABSI rates increased 27.1% from 0.71 to 0.90 per 1,000 device days (P=.027). Candida-associated CLABSI increased by 91.1% from 0.104 to 0.198 per 1,000 device days (P=.012), and Enterococcus-associated CLABSI increased by 121.6% from 0.071 to 0.16 per 1,000 device days (P=.008).
The revised CAUTI definition led to a large reduction in CAUTI rates and, in turn, an increase in candidemia and enterococcemia cases classified as CLABSI events. These findings have important implications on the perceived successes or failures to eliminate both infections.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2017;38:685–689
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