Adopting a Standard of Care: Says Who?

by Erica Mitchell | February 6 2023

In our last post, we explored how adopting a new product can result in some heavy lifting. Not only does product adoption require financial investment, it requires significant investment of time and resources even before the decision is made. Even after the new product is in place, the heavy lifting can continue, especially if the intended users are resistant to change. In today's post, we'll look at the obstacles to adopting new products, even if they are proven to improve patient outcomes or save money. Even if they are considered standard of care.

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Special Populations Series: Cancer

by Erica Mitchell | February 1 2023

With World Cancer Day this Saturday, we dedicate this post to those patients facing a cancer diagnosis. As with any serious disease, the many types of cancer put a great deal of stress on the body and can make a person more susceptible to infection. Unique to cancer, however, are the infection risks due to the disease's treatment. Today we will explore how cancer and infection intersect in this special population.

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Social Determinants of Health and Infection Control

by Erica Mitchell | January 9 2023

Medical researchers have recently placed more emphasis on the non-medical conditions that impact patient health and outcomes. Collectively known as social determinants of health (SDOH), these are the conditions surrounding birth, growth, living, working, and aging. The distribution of money, power, and resources play heavily into the formula: Those lacking stable access to any (or all) of these factors see impacts on health, including exposure to and infection by disease-causing pathogens. In today's post, we'll explore the intersection of SDOH and infection control and prevention, and describe some of the ways today's health system is trying to address this issue.

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Electronic Health Records and Infection Control

by Erica Mitchell | January 4 2023

The medical chart is set to become a thing of the past. Those thick folders containing your medical history are steadily being replaced by electronic health records, or EHR. The Veteran's Administration initiated the first large-scale implementation of these computerized files in the 1970s, but the concept was slow to catch on in general practice until the advent of a combination of powerful and affordable hardware, fast and secure internet, and reliable and seemingly endless cloud storage capabilities. Since then, EHR systems have been shown to make physician visits faster, help coordinate care between multiple offices, and improve health outcomes. Can EHR bring the same success to the fight against hospital acquired infections?

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The Top 3 Patient Safety Issues: How Infection Control Affects Them All

by Erica Mitchell | December 29 2022

Many healthcare concerns will follow us into the new year, some we have carried for decades and some that have become more threatening thanks to the COVID pandemic. Among all the many lists of top concerns, three remain consistent: Staffing shortages, capacity, and healthcare-associated infections. In today's post, we will reveal how reducing healthcare associated infections (HAIs) directly improves patient outcomes, but can can positively impact staffing and capacity as well.

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Surfaces and Surgical Site Infections: The Next Step

by Erica Mitchell | December 5 2022

Among all tracked hospital-associated infections, the one that seems to have the lowest rates are surgical site infections. While this relative strength varies by region, the overall low rate of surgical site infections is due in part to so many of the opportunities for infection being eliminated by interventions. However, surgical site infections still occur and data seems to point at the contamination of the patient environment, including surfaces, playing a significant role. In today's post, we will look at all the opportunities for infection after a surgical procedure, and highlight which vulnerabilities still remain.

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Help Wanted: Lab Technologists Needed

by Erica Mitchell | November 2 2022

Would it surprise you to hear that about two-thirds of clinical decisions are based on laboratory test information? Yes, medical technologist are a critical high demand staff position in healthcare facilities. Today's post will explore this behind-the-scenes job and its critical role in the fight against hospital acquired infections. 

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Career Focus: What is a hospital epidemiologist?

by Erica Mitchell | October 26 2022

Epidemiology is a branch of medicine that studies the way disease moves through human populations, from outbreak to control. The word epidemic itself means “among the people,” used to describe a disease that affects an entire community. Today we will explore the role of the specialist dealing with disease in a very specific community, the hospital.

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We Now Return to Your Regularly Scheduled Pandemic: Hospital Associated Infections

by Erica Mitchell | September 23 2022

In a widely-circulated interview, President Biden stated that the pandemic was, in effect, over. While not an official statement and also clarified over the next few days, the idea that the worst of the pandemic is over has been echoed by global medical experts. So what now? A return to "normal" in the medical field does not mean no more infections; in fact, it means returning to a world where almost 100,000 people die each year from infections they acquired while receiving medical care - most of which are preventable. There are many similarities between a pandemic and the on-going crisis of hospital-acquired infections, and in today's post, we will explore them. 

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Outpatient Services and Infection Control: Moving Forward [Part 5]

by Erica Mitchell | September 21 2022

This series on outpatient services and infection control can seem rather dismal. Thankfully, most outpatient facilities are safe and only a small percentage of patients experience an HAI. Nonetheless, the breaches in infection control mean that given the right circumstances, severe outbreaks can (and do) take place. The reality can make us feel powerless and confused. Fortunately, there are things that we can do to help.

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© EOS Surfaces and EOScu Blog, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to EOS Surfaces and EOScu Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.