In today's healthcare marketplace, it is growing commonplace to consider patients as customers - and the shoe fits, so to speak. Patients do have choices when it comes to medical care, and now have plenty of ratings and data points to consider when selecting a physician, an outpatient center, a hospital or a long-term care facility. One of those data points is patient experience, which encompasses the many interactions with medical staff, facilities, and representatives. In today's post, we will consider the measurable aspects of the patient experience, including infection control and prevention.
If you spend any time at all in the world of infection control and prevention, you've run across the NHSN, or National Healthcare Safety Network. Those of us who are not directly involved with infection control, however, may lack a full understanding of what the NHSN truly is. Today's post is for those of us who work on the periphery of infection control efforts: An introduction to the NHSN.
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.