Background

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Healthcare-associated infections (HAI) are a major source of morbidity and mortality and a leading cause of death. However, HAIs are usually preventable. Each year, one in 20 patients acquires an HAI during their hospital stay, and an estimated five percent die. With increased patient acuity and antimicrobial resistance, negative patient outcomes and associated costs are expected to continue to grow. Recent estimates put the cost of HAIs at around $20 billion annually.

About CHAIPI

The California Healthcare-Associated Infection Prevention Initiative (CHAIPI) seeks to reduce and eliminate HAIs through clinical and technological innovation. The purpose of CHAIPI is to reduce unnecessary morbidity, mortality and costs associated with HAIs in California hospitals.

During the 18 months of Phase I, CHAIPI found that automated reporting, prevention, and surveillance technology can decrease HAIs. In Phase II, CHAIPI will expand its efforts and include hospitals across California. The goals of the project are to enable participating hospitals to get to zero in one to three of their most harmful HAIs; to build improvement capacity; and to help hospitals effectively use technology to support their HAI reduction within a framework of systematic quality improvement. Blue Shield of California Foundation (BSCF) will give grants to 100 California hospitals to support participation in the CHAIPI Collaborative.

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The Columbia Study

The Columbia University School of Nursing team, in partnership with the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC), has designed a two year study to evaluate the effects of CHAIPI on infection control procedures, infection rates, and changes in the roles of infection prevention staff.

This important study will inform our understanding of what institutional, procedural, and technological innovations can assist health professionals to reduce and eliminate morbidity, mortality, and the high costs associated with hospital-associated infections.

Infection preventionists in California have a unique opportunity to contribute to the understanding of their profession. The research team will compare CHAIPI and non-CHAIPI hospitals, as well as provide an overall picture of infection prevention programs in California via a preó and postó survey design. This design will permit evaluation of changes in infection preventionistsí roles as well as infection prevention and control programs over the course of the next two years.

This study is based on the Prevention of Nosocomial Infections and Cost-Effectiveness (P-NICE) study led by Dr. Patricia Stone.