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Background: Blood cultures are commonly ordered for patients with low risk of bacteremia. Liberal blood-culture ordering increases the risk of false-positive results, which can lead to increased length of stay, excess antibiotics, and unnecessary diagnostic procedures. We implemented a blood-culture indication algorithm with data feedback and assessed the impact on ordering volume and percent positivity. Methods: We performed a prospective cohort study from February 2022 to November 2022 using historical controls from February 2020 to January 2022. We introduced the blood-culture algorithm (Fig. 1) in 2 adult surgical intensive care units (ICUs). Clinicians reviewed charts of eligible patients with blood cultures weekly to determine whether the blood-culture algorithm was followed. They provided feedback to the unit medical directors weekly. We defined a blood-culture event as ≥1 blood culture within 24 hours. We excluded patients aged <18 years, absolute neutrophil count <500, and heart and lung transplant recipients at the time of blood-culture review. Results: In total, 7,315 blood-culture events in the preintervention group and 2,506 blood-culture events in the postintervention group met eligibility criteria. The average monthly blood-culture rate decreased from 190 blood cultures per 1,000 patient days to 142 blood cultures per 1,000 patient days (P < .01) after the algorithm was implemented. (Fig. 2) The average monthly blood-culture positivity increased from 11.7% to 14.2% (P = .13). Average monthly days of antibiotic therapy (DOT) was lower in the postintervention period than in the preintervention period (2,200 vs 1,940; P < .01). (Fig. 3) The ICU length of stay did not change before the intervention compared to after the intervention: 10 days (IQR, 5–18) versus 10 days (IQR, 5–17; P = .63). The in-hospital mortality rate was lower during the postintervention period, but the difference was not statistically significant: 9.24% versus 8.34% (P = .17). The all-cause 30-day mortality was significantly lower during the intervention period: 11.9% versus 9.7% (P < .01). The unplanned 30-day readmission percentage was significantly lower during the intervention period (10.6% vs 7.6%; P < .01). Over the 9-month intervention, we reviewed 916 blood-culture events in 452 unique patients. Overall, 74.6% of blood cultures followed the algorithm. The most common reasons overall for ordering blood cultures were severe sepsis or septic shock (37%), isolated fever and/or leukocytosis (19%), and documenting clearance of bacteremia (15%) (Table 1). The most common indications for inappropriate blood cultures were isolated fever and/or leukocytosis (53%). Conclusions: We introduced a blood-culture algorithm with data feedback in 2 surgical ICUs and observed decreases in blood-culture volume without a negative impact on ICU LOS or mortality rate.
Background: Racial and ethnic disparities in healthcare access, medical treatment, and outcomes have been extensively reported. However, the impact of racial and ethnic differences in patient safety, including healthcare-associated infections, has not been well described. Methods: We performed a retrospective review analyzing prospectively collected data on central-line–associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) and catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI) rates per 1,000 device days. Data for adult patients admitted to an academic medical center between 2018 and 2021 were stratified by 7 racial and ethnic groups: non-Hispanic White, non-Hispanic Black, Hispanic/Latino, Asian, American Indian/Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, and othe. The “other” group was composed of bi- or multiracial patients, or those for whom no data were reported. We compared the CLABSI and CAUTI rates between the different racial and ethnic groups using Poisson regression. Results: Compared to non-Hispanic White patients, the rate of CLABSI was significantly higher in non-Hispanic Black patients (1.27; 95% CI, 1.02–1.58; P < .03) and those in the “other” race category (1.79; 95% CI, 1.39–2.30; P < .001, respectively), and these trends increased in Hispanic/Latino patients (Table 1). Similarly, Black patients had higher rates of CAUTI (1.42; 95% CI, 1.05–1.92; P < .02), as did Asian patients (2.49; 95% CI, 1.16–5.36; P < .02), and patients in the “other” category (1.52; 95% CI, 1.06–2.18; P < .02) (Table 2). Conclusions: Racial and ethnic minorities may be vulnerable to a higher rate of patient safety events, including CLABSIs and CAUTIs. Additional analyses controlling for potential confounding factors are needed to better understand the relationship between race or ethnicity, clinical management, and healthcare-associated infections. This evaluation is essential to inform mitigation strategies and to provide optimum, equitable care for all.
Background:Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) is a major source of morbidity and mortality. Even after recovery, recurrent CDI (rCDI) occurs frequently, and concomitant antibiotic use for treatment of a concurrent non–C. difficile infection is a major risk factor. Treatment with fidaxomicin versus vancomycin is associated with similar rate of cure and lower recurrence risk. However, the comparative efficacy of these 2 agents remains unclear in those receiving concomitant antibiotics. Methods: We conducted a randomized, controlled, open-label trial at the University of Michigan and St. Joseph Mercy hospitals in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Patients provided written informed consent at enrollment. We included all hospitalized patients aged ≥18 years with a positive test for toxigenic C. difficile, >3 unformed stools per 24 hours, and ≥1 qualifying concomitant antibiotic with a planned treatment of an infection for ≥5 days after enrollment. We excluded patients with complicated CDI, allergy to vancomycin–fidaxomicin, planned adjunctive CDI treatments, CDI treatment for >24 hours prior to enrollment, concomitant laxative use, current or planned colostomy or ileostomy, and/or planned long-term (>12 weeks) concomitant antibiotic use. Clinical cure was defined as resolution of diarrhea for 2 consecutive days maintained until the end of therapy and for 2 days afterward. rCDI was defined as recurrent diarrhea with positive testing within 30 days of initial treatment. Patients were randomized (stratified by ICU status) to fidaxomicin 200 mg twice daily or vancomycin 125 mg orally 4 times daily for 10 days. If concomitant antibiotic treatment continued >10 days, the study drug continued until the concomitant antibiotic ended. Bivariable statistics included t tests and χ2 tests. Results: After screening 5,101 patients for eligibility (May 2017–May 2021), 144 were included and randomized (Fig. 1). Study characteristics and outcomes are noted in Table 1. Baseline characteristics were similar between groups. Most patients were aged <65 years, were on a proton-pump inhibitor (PPI), and were not in the ICU. The mean duration of concomitant antibiotic was 18.4 days. In the intention-to-treat population, clinical cure (73% vs 62.9%; P =.195), and rCDI (3.3% vs 4.0%; P >.99) were similar for fidaxomicin and vancomycin, respectively. Conclusions: In this study of patients with CDI receiving a concomitant antibiotic, a numerically higher proportion were cured with fidaxomicin versus vancomycin, but this result did not reach statistical significance. Overall recurrence was lower than anticipated in both arms compared to previous studies in which duration of CDI treatment was not extended during concomitant antibiotic treatment. Future studies are needed to ascertain whether clinical cure is higher with fidaxomicin than vancomycin during concomitant antibiotic exposure, and whether extending the duration of CDI treatment reduces recurrence.
Funding: Merck & Co.
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