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CLABSI Prevention Spotlighted at APIC Conference

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, June 11, 2014

A trio of reports on protocols for reducing rates of central line-associated bloodstream infections was among the highlights of the annual conference of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology.

Some 2,500 clinicians specializing in infection control left the 41st annual conference of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology this week with better knowledge of hand washing guidance, the importance of healthcare worker influenza vaccination, and the prevention of central line-associated bloodstream infections.

The APIC conference, which convened in Anaheim, CA June 7–9, drew a record 4,170 attendees including exhibitors, and 2,514 clinicians, an APIC spokeswoman said.

Port Protectors
Three reports made CLABSI prevention a key theme at the conference. One, from Texas Health's Barbara Danielson, found that use of alcohol-impregnated port protectors helped reduce infection rates. Even though line insertion practices were correct, "13% (of the) staff did not scrub the hub of the catheter with alcohol for a full 15 seconds before accessing."

The hospital had seen a 40% decrease in CLABSI rates in 2011 after implementation of alcohol-coated port protectors, so preventionists decided to expand it throughout the hospital. After the first 10 months, they saw a 68% reduction compared to the previous 10 months without the use of alcohol on port protectors.

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