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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Biocidal > Antimicrobial

by Erica Mitchell | October 24 2022

We have often discussed the different terms used to describe products that clean the patient environment in this blog. Using the correct terms, and understanding their full definitions, is a critical first step in both writing and learning about the field of infection control and prevention. One term that comes up often as we talk to folks not directly involved in the field is the broad term "antimicrobial." In today's post, we will look at how this broad term covers a huge variety of products and efficacy against pathogens, and we will provide some examples to put this word in context.

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What Are ESKAPE Pathogens?

by Erica Mitchell | October 17 2022

In 2008, the medical field presented data to the federal government in support of funding to study antimicrobial resistance in hospital-associated pathogens. A leading figure in the effort, Dr. Louis B. Rice, had spent his career studying the mechanisms of antibiotic resistance and knew first-hand the threat presented by resistant pathogens as hospital-acquired infections. In his statement of support to continued funding of research, Dr. Rice coined a term that has become a useful acronym for anyone working in the field of infection prevention and control: ESKAPE pathogens. In today's post, we will discover these pathogens and the status of our fight against them since Dr. Rice first devised the term.

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Wastewater Sampling and Infection Control

by Erica Mitchell | March 27 2022

Wastewater and infection have a long and sordid history. Ever since humans began living in close, permanent quarters, we have had to deal with the issue of removing human waste and dirty water. We dumped waste into rivers, and when that wasn't sufficient, we invented plumbing and sewer systems. The discovery of the role pathogens play in the spread of disease led to even better sequestration of contaminated waste, which led to better community health overall. Today, we will look at the role this wastewater plays not in disease transmission, but rather, in disease surveillance and eradication.

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Measuring the Cost-Effectiveness of an HAI Reduction Intervention: Effectiveness

by Erica Mitchell | October 13 2021

Measuring the cost-effectiveness of an infection prevention intervention requires careful translation of complex issues into dollar values: The problems, the possible solutions, the methods of evaluation, and the desired outcomes. The result is a calculation that measures whether or not the costs associated with an intervention are outweighed by the benefits gained by that intervention. Today we will delve into the big ideas behind that final calculation.

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Measuring the Cost Effectiveness of an HAI Reduction Intervention: Perspective

by Erica Mitchell | September 29 2021

Any time a healthcare facility considers investing in a new intervention - a medicine, a device, a piece of equipment, and even a training program - one of the first considerations will be cost effectiveness. The facility has a responsibility, both financial and ethical, to weigh the cost of an investment with the likelihood and extent of patient benefits. We would all love to live in a world where hospitals could invest in any and all interventions without thought as to cost and return on investment. Instead, we face a reality in which not only are financial resources limited, but also personnel, space, and even time are constrained. As a result, when millions of dollars and patients' lives are at stake, calculating cost effectiveness of an intervention has a lot on the line.

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Preventive Biocidal Surfaces: A Definition in 4 Parts

by Erica Mitchell | December 29 2020

What makes a surface a Preventive | Biocidal SurfaceTM? Four critical characteristics: It is registered by the EPA for public health claims. It actively kills harmful bacteria*. It continues cleaning even after recontamination. Finally, it requires no additional human processes - it performs its sanitizing simply by being installed. 

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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.