Central Line Associated Bloodstream Infections
Central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs) result in thousands of deaths each year and billions of dollars in added costs to the U.S. healthcare system, yet these infections are mostly preventable.
What is a central line?
A central line (also known as a central venous catheter) is a catheter (tube) that doctors often place in a large vein in the neck, chest, or groin to give medication or fluids or to collect
blood for medical tests. Intravenous catheters (also known as IVs) are used frequently to give medicine or fluids into a vein near the skin’s surface (usually on the arm or hand), for short periods of time.
What is a central line-associated bloodstream infection?
A central line-associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) is a serious infection that occurs when germs (usually bacteria or virus) enter the bloodstream through the central line. Patients
who get a CLABSI have a fever, and might also have red skin and soreness around the central line. If this happens, healthcare providers can do tests to learn if there is an infection present.
What are some of the things that healthcare providers at Lexington Medical Center are doing to prevent CLABSI?
Healthcare providers at Lexington Medical Center have taken the following steps to help prevent CLABSI’s :
- Lexington Medical Center follows CDC (Centers for Disease Control) recommended central line insertion and maintenance practices to prevent infection when the central line is placed,
including: Perform hand hygiene, apply appropriate skin antiseptic, ensure that the skin prep agent has completely dried before inserting the central line
- We have several types of central line catheters coated with antimicrobial infection protection available
- We use maximal sterile barrier precautions during insertion (sterile gloves, sterile gown, cap, mask and large sterile drape)
- Once the central line is in place our staff follow recommended CDC central line maintenance practices
- We bathe patients in Intensive Care Units and Oncology daily with antiseptic impregnated cloths to further reduce risk of infection
- We remove a central line as soon as it is no longer needed.
Lexington Medical Center closely monitors patients with central lines. Interdisciplinary health care teams carefully evaluate clinical practice issues and infection outcome data.
Lexington Medical Center reports CLABSI data to the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN), a secure Centers for Disease Control managed data reporting system. This data is
shared with health consumers through the SD DHEC Hospital Acquired Infection Website as well as the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services Quality website.