University of Maryland Shore Medical Center at Chestertown recently participated in a Maryland Hospital Association event at Turf Valley, in Ellicott City, with 36 other Maryland hospitals involved in the CAUTI Project, an initiative that aims to reduce the number of catheter-associated urinary tract infections acquired by hospital patients.
Three inpatient units at Shore Medical Center at Chestertown were recognized for their contributions to decreasing the number of CAUTIs, including the hospital’s Intensive Care (ICU), Intermediate Care (IMC) and Medical/Surgical units. Additionally, the hospital staff submitted a presentation entitled, “CAUTI: Mission Possible” focusing on efforts being made to decrease inappropriate use of catheters and to eliminate such types of urinary tract infections. This presentation tied for first place with one from Johns Hopkins Hospital awarding them a male and female catheterization simulator, a piece of equipment to be used by hospital staff.
“Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infections are the second most common site of healthcare-associated infections,” comments Donna Saunders, infection prevention coordinator, Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. “CAUTIs not only increase patient discomfort, they also increase the patient’s hospital length of stay and costs. We joined the Maryland Hospital Association and Maryland Patient Safety Center’s worthwhile CAUTI project because of these issues.”
Saunders continues, “Many urinary tract infections can be prevented by following guidelines describing which patients are candidates for catheter placement. Educating physicians, nurses and patients on best practices to make sure catheters are used only when the patient’s condition requires the procedure, along with daily monitoring, are among the steps that have resulted in the reduced infection rate. Eliminating healthcare-associated infections such as CAUTIs improves patient outcomes and saves lives.”