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Determination of whether vascular catheter disinfecting antiseptic-containing caps alone are effective at decreasing microbial colonization of connectors compared to antiseptic-containing caps plus a 5-second alcohol manual disinfection.
The study was conducted in a 718-bed, tertiary-care, academic hospital.
A convenience sample of adult patients across intensive care units and acute care wards with peripheral and central venous catheters covered with antiseptic-containing caps.
Quality improvement study completed over 5 days. The standard-of-care group consisted of catheter connectors with antiseptic-containing caps cleaned with a 5-second alcohol wipe scrub prior to culture. The comparison group consisted of catheter connectors with antiseptic-containing caps without a 5-second alcohol wipe scrub prior to culture. The connectors were pressed directly onto blood agar plates and incubated. Plates were assessed for growth after 48-72 hours.
In total, 356 catheter connectors were cultured: 165 in the standard-of-care group, 165 in the comparison group, and 26 catheters connectors without an antiseptic-containing cap, which were designated as controls. Overall, 18 catheter connectors (5.06%) yielded microbial growth. Of the 18 connectors with microbial growth, 2 (1.21%) were from the comparison group, 1 (0.61%) was from the standard-of-care group, and 15 were controls without an antiseptic-containing cap.
Bacterial colonization rates were similar between the catheter connectors cultured with antiseptic-containing caps alone and catheter connectors with antiseptic-containing caps cultured after a 5-second scrub with alcohol. This finding suggests that the use of antiseptic-containing caps precludes the need for additional disinfection.
A survey of academic medical-center hospital epidemiologists indicated substantial deviation from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance regarding healthcare providers (HCPs) recovering from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) returning to work. Many hospitals continue to operate under contingency status and have HCPs return to work earlier than recommended.
Contaminated blood cultures result in extended hospital stays and extended durations of antibiotic therapy. Rapid molecular-based blood culture testing can speed positive culture detection and improve clinical outcomes, particularly when combined with an antimicrobial stewardship program. We investigated the impact of a multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) FilmArray Blood Culture Identification (BCID) system on clinical outcomes associated with contaminated blood cultures.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study involving secondary data analysis at a single institution. In this before-and-after study, patients with contaminated blood cultures in the period before PCR BCID was implemented (ie, the pre-PCR period; n = 305) were compared to patients with contaminated blood cultures during the period after PCR BCID was implemented (ie, the post-PCR implementation period; n = 464). The primary exposure was PCR status and the main outcomes of the study were length of hospital stay and days of antibiotic therapy.
We did not detect a significant difference in adjusted mean length of hospital stay before (10.8 days; 95% confidence interval [CI], 9.8–11.9) and after (11.2 days; 95% CI, 10.2–12.3) the implementation of the rapid BCID panel in patients with contaminated blood cultures (P = .413). Likewise, adjusted mean days of antibiotic therapy between patients in pre-PCR group (5.1 days; 95% CI, 4.5–5.7) did not significantly differ from patients in post-PCR group (5.3 days; 95% CI, 4.8–5.9; P = .543).
The introduction of a rapid PCR-based blood culture identification system did not improve clinical outcomes, such as length of hospital stay and duration of antibiotic therapy, in patients with contaminated blood cultures.
In September 2021, a cluster of 6 patients with nosocomial coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were identified in a transplant unit. A visitor and 11 healthcare workers also tested positive for severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Genomic sequencing identified 3 separate introductions of SARS-CoV-2 with related transmission among the identified patients and healthcare workers.
Contaminated blood cultures result in extended hospital stays and unnecessary antibiotic therapy. Patient-specific factors associated with blood culture contamination remain largely unexplored. Identifying patients at higher risk of blood culture contamination could alert healthcare providers to take extra precautionary measures to limit contamination in these patients, and thereby prevent associated adverse outcomes. We sought to identify patient-related factors that contribute to blood culture contamination in hospitalized patients.
Design and setting:
We conducted a secondary data analysis of a retrospective cohort study at an academic medical center.
Study participants included 19,255 adult patients who had blood culture(s) performed during a hospital admission between June 2014 and December 2016.
Data were analyzed to evaluate risk factors for blood culture contamination using logistic regression.
Among adult patients, we identified 464 contaminated episodes and 11,010 negative blood-culture episodes. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 1.67; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.20–2.34) and stay in an intensive care unit (ICU) during an admission (AOR, 1.41; 95% CI, 1.14–1.74) were associated with blood culture contamination. Other risk factors included race, body mass index, and admission from the emergency department. Subgroup analyses of patients admitted from the emergency department showed similar results.
We identified patient-specific factors that increase the odds of false-positive blood cultures. By introducing mitigation strategies to limit contamination in patients with these risk factors, it may be possible to reduce the adverse clinical impact of blood culture contamination.
Antibiotics are frequently prescribed inappropriately for acute respiratory infections in the outpatient setting. We report the implementation of a multifaceted outpatient antimicrobial stewardship initiative resulting in a 12.3% absolute reduction of antibiotic prescribing for acute bronchitis in primary care clinics receiving active interventions.
The decision to discontinue isolation in hospitalized patients with persistently positive severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) molecular testing is nuanced. Improvement in clinical status should be evaluated with expert consultation when considering whether discontinuation of isolation is appropriate. The cycle threshold value may serve as a useful adjunct to this decision-making process.
To assess the clinical impact of contaminated blood cultures in hospitalized patients during a period when rapid diagnostic testing using a FilmArray Blood Culture Identification (BCID) panel was in use.
Retrospective cohort study.
Single academic medical center.
Patients who had blood culture(s) performed during an admission between June 2014 and December 2016.
Length of hospital stay and days of antibiotic therapy were assessed in relation to blood-culture contamination using generalized linear models with univariable and multivariable analyses.
Among 11,474 patients who had blood cultures performed, the adjusted mean length of hospital stay for patients with contaminated blood-culture episodes (N = 464) was 12.3 days (95% confidence interval [CI], 11.4–13.2) compared to 11.5 days (95% CI, 11.0–11.9) for patients (N = 11,010) with negative blood-culture episodes (P = .032). The adjusted mean durations of antibiotic therapy for patients with contaminated and negative blood-culture episodes were 6.0 days (95% CI, 5.3–6.7) and 5.2 days (95% CI, 4.9–5.4), respectively (P = .011).
Despite the use of molecular-based, rapid blood-culture identification, contamination of blood cultures continues to result in prolonged hospital stay and unnecessary antibiotic therapy in hospitalized patients.
External urinary collection devices (EUCDs) may reduce indwelling catheter usage and catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs). In this retrospective quasi-experimental study, we demonstrated that EUCD implementation in women was associated with significantly decreased indwelling catheter usage and a trend (P = .10) toward decreased CAUTI per 1,000 patient days.
Antibiotic time-outs (ATOs) have been advocated to improve antibiotic use without dedicated stewardship resources, but their utility is poorly defined. We sought to evaluate the effectiveness of an ATO led by a team-based pharmacist.
Cluster randomized controlled trial.
Six medicine teams at an academic medical facility.
Inpatients who received antibiotics and were cared for by a medicine team.
In phase A (2 months) pharmacist-led ATOs were implemented on 3 medicine teams (ATO-A) while 3 teams maintained usual care (UC-A). In phase B (2 months), ATOs were continued in the ATO group (ATO-B) and ATOs were initiated in the UC group (UC ATO-B). We targeted 2 ATO points: early (<72 hours after antibiotics were initiated) and late (after the early period but ≤5 days after antibiotic initiation).
In total, 290 ATOs were documented (181 early, 87 late, and 22 subsequent) among 538 admissions. The most common ATO recommendations were narrow therapy (148 of 290), no change (124 of 290), and change to oral (30 of 290). ATO initiation was lower in the UC ATO-B group than in either ATO group (21.8% UC ATO-B vs 69.2% ATO-A and -B). Overall antibiotic use was not different between the groups (P = .51), although intravenous (IV) levofloxacin use decreased in the UC group after ATO implementation (49 DOT/1,000 PD vs 20 DOT/1,000 PD; P = .022). The ratio of oral (PO) to intravenous (IV) DOT was lower in the UC group than in any of the ATO groups (P = .032). We detected no differences in mortality, length of stay, readmission, C. difficile infection, or antibiotic adverse events.
Implementation of a pharmacist-led ATO was feasible and well accepted but did not change overall antibiotic use. An ATO may promote increased use of oral antibiotics, but more effective strategies for self-stewardship are needed.
As the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to circulate, testing strategies are of the utmost importance. Given national shortages of testing supplies, personal protective equipment, and other hospital resources, diagnostic stewardship is necessary to aid in resource management. We report the low utility of serial testing in a low-prevalence setting.
This narrative review addresses vascular access device choice from peripheral intravenous catheters through central venous catheters, including the evolving use of midline catheters. The review incorporates best practices, published algorithms, and complications extending beyond CLABSI and phlebitis to assist clinicians in navigating complex vascular access decisions.
To identify clinical variables that influence blood culture volume recovery
Retrospective chart review and linear model analysis
A 621-bed Academic Medical Center with a Clinical Laboratory that processes 20,000+ blood cultures annually and dedicated phlebotomy staff for venipuncture
Consecutive patients requiring blood culture
Over a 6-day period, blood volume was determined in 568 culture bottles from 128 unique adult patients, and clinical data from the time of phlebotomy were extracted from hospital electronic medical records. Conditional hierarchical linear models with random effects for patient and phlebotomy occasion were utilized to analyze correlations between values collected from the same patient and during the same phlebotomy occasion.
Blood samples obtained from a central venous catheter yielded, on average, 2.53 mL more blood (95% CI, 1.63–3.44 mL; P<.001) than those from peripheral venipuncture, and aerobic bottles contained 0.38 mL more blood (95% CI, 0.1–0.67 mL; P=.009) than the anaerobic bottles. The remaining clinical variables (eg, hospital department, patient age, body mass index, gender, mean arterial pressure, concomitant systemic antibiotic use, and Charlson comorbidity index score) failed to reach statistical significance (P<.05) in relation to volume.
Blood cultures obtained from central venous catheters contain significantly greater volume than those obtained via peripheral venipuncture. These data highlight the clinically significant issue of low culture volume recovery, indicate that diagnostic and prognostic tools that rely on volume-dependent phenomena (ie, time to positivity) may require further validation under usual clinical practice circumstances, and suggest goals for future institutional performance improvement.