HAIs are germs that can make a person very sick, and thousands of Americans become ill each year from HAIs making them one of the ten leading causes of death in the United States. The most common HAIs are: pneumonia, digestive illness, blood infections, and surgical site infections.
There are important steps that patients and healthcare providers can take to prevent HAIs, like hand washing.
- The HAI program collects, analyzes, and publishes information on the number of HAIs by:
- Healthcare location
- Infection type
- How many healthcare workers get a flu shot every year in New Hampshire.
- HAI Publications provide reports on both HAI and healthcare worker flu shot rates.
Preventing and reducing healthcare-associated infections (HAI) is a top priority for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The HHS Steering Committee for HAI was established in July 2008, to develop the HHS Action Plan to Prevent Healthcare-Associated Infections, which provides a roadmap for HAI prevention in acute care hospitals. The HHS Action Plan includes recommendations for surveillance, research, communication and metrics for measuring progress towards national goals.
The State HAI Plan to respond and prevent healthcare-associated infections (HAI) is primarily used by the HAI Program and other stakeholders use the plan to identify current progress, guide future initiatives, and identify areas for improvement. The plan can be used as a resource for healthcare facilities and consumers to understand current and planned future HAI prevention and response activities.
Infection Prevention Guidelines
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC) have published numerous infection prevention guidelines for use in healthcare facilities. The HICPAC is a federal advisory committee made up of 14 external infection control and public health experts who provide guidance to the CDC regarding the practice of:
- Healthcare infection prevention and control
- Strategies for surveillance
- Prevention and control of HAI in United States healthcare facilities.
Additionally, CDC has published infection prevention and control training materials for Project Firstline, specifically for the prevention and management of certain infections in healthcare settings.
Facility HAI Reporting Requirements
New Hampshire statute, (RSA) 151:32-35, requires hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers (ASC), and end-stage renal dialysis centers (ESRD) are to identify, track and report HAI to DHHS.
Healthcare Associated Infection Annual Reports
New Hampshire law RSA 151 also requires certain healthcare facilities report specific parameters to DHHS in order to monitor HAI.
Specifically the statute requires reporting of:
- Central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI);
- Central line insertion practices; and,
- Catheter associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI) in intensive care units.
Hospitals also report data on:
- Surgical site infections (SSI) following coronary artery bypass procedures
- Colon procedures
- Abdominal hysterectomy procedures and
- Knee arthroplasty procedures.
ASC also report data on surgical site infections following breast, hernia and open reduction fracture procedures.
ESRD centers are now required to report certain bloodstream and access site infections.
The HAI program collects, analyzes and publishes the data annually.
NH Healthcare Personnel Influenza Vaccination Coverage
Since healthcare personnel provide care to patients at high risk for complications of influenza, hospitals are required to offer the influenza vaccine each year to employees.
Hospitals, ASC, ESRD centers, adult residential care, assisted living, adult day care, and nursing homes are all required by New Hampshire law to report healthcare personnel influenza vaccination rates.
Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAI) Hospital Reports
The HAI Program publishes hospital data each year as mandated by law.
The NH HAI Hospital Report includes occurrence of specific HAI, including:
- Central line-associated bloodstream infections
- Catheter-associated urinary tract infections, and
- Surgical site infections following certain heart, colon, abdominal hysterectomy, and knee surgical procedures are reported.
This report also provides data on hospital compliance with measures that help protect patients from HAI such as infection prevention practices during central line insertions in hospitals and influenza vaccination coverage among healthcare personnel.
HAI Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) Reports
The HAI Program publishes ASC data each year as mandated by law. The NH HAI ASC Report includes occurrence of specific HAI, including:
- Surgical site infections (SSI) following certain breast, hernia, and open reduction of fracture surgical procedures.
This report also provides data on ASC compliance with measures that help protect patients from HAI such as intravenous antibiotic prophylaxis administration to prevent SSI and influenza vaccination coverage among healthcare personnel.
Healthcare Personnel Influenza Vaccination Coverage
Healthcare personnel can become infected with influenza through contact with infected patients and can transmit influenza to patients and other staff. Because healthcare personnel provide care to patients at high risk for complications of influenza, they should be offered influenza vaccine each year. Monitoring of vaccination coverage in certain New Hampshire healthcare facilities has been required by law since 2008, although the availability of historical data varies by facility type.
Please refer to the annual hospital and ambulatory surgery center reports for facility-specific vaccination coverage data in those settings. The following documents provide information for overall vaccination coverage data in New Hampshire healthcare facilities or facility-specific data in adult day care, supported residential care, and assisted living facilities.
The HAI Plan
Four Primary Calls to Action:
- RESPOND to threats of infectious disease transmission
- ANALYZE data to target prevention activities
- PREVENT future HAIs, infection control breaches, high threat infectious diseases (e.g. Ebola) and antimicrobial resistance
- TRAINING and promoting best infection prevention and control practices
Know Your Role in Preventing HAIs
Know Your Role in Preventing HAIs
Transcript of video:
The last thing a patient expects - or deserves - is to develop an infection while receiving
medical treatment for another condition, especially when that infection is preventable.
Healthcare-associated infections, or HAIs, happen - but together, through the efforts
of public health and healthcare across the country, we're making progress in preventing
HAIs and antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
But there is still more to do.
Public health departments and healthcare providers are working to tackle this problem by raising
awareness of HAIs and antibiotic resistance, using data to drive localized prevention strategies,
responding to outbreaks and emerging threats in communities, promoting appropriate use
of antibiotics through antibiotic stewardship programs, and building collaborations across
public health and healthcare partners.
Because together, we can make a difference.
In fact, research shows that when public health, healthcare facilities, doctors, and patient
care providers are aware of infection problems and take specific steps to prevent them, rates
of some HAIs can decrease by more than 70 percent.1
So what steps can be taken?
Whether you're a public health professional, healthcare facility leader, doctor, healthcare
worker, infection preventionist, or even a patient, join us to help prevent HAIs and
reduce antibiotic resistance.
If you work directly with patients, you should: Sanitize your hands before and after touching
Know your facility's infection prevention rules and protocols.
If antibiotics are needed, use the proper drug at the right dose for the proper duration.
Take an antibiotic time-out and reassess therapy after 48 to 72 hours.
Follow all recommendations for medical device insertion and care.
Use devices only when needed.
When transferring patients, ensure other facilities are notified of any infection or known colonization.
Even if you don't care for patients directly, you can: Attend infection prevention and control
trainings in your facility.
Understand and be able to communicate the value of infection control and antibiotic
Follow proper environmental hygiene and cleaning practices.
Together, we can make healthcare safer.
Everyone has a role to play - know yours.
For more information on HAIs and antibiotic resistance, visit www.cdc.gov/hai.