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Changes in Prevalence of Health Care-Associated Infections in U.S. Hospitals

Magill SS, O'Leary E, Janelle SJ, et al. N Engl J Med. 2018 Nov 1;379(18):1732-1744. [CrossRef] [PubMed]

Health care-associated infections (HCAI) have been associated with poorer outcomes including increased mortality. Programs have been initiated by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to reduce reimbursement to hospitals based on their HCAI rate. The authors conducted a point-prevalence self-reported survey of selected US hospitals and compared it to 2011 data. The results showed that 3.2% of hospitalized patients had HACI in 2015 which was significantly lower than the 4.0% reported in 2011. However, mortality did not differ. The results suggest that the hospital-reported HACI has declined but was not associated with the dramatic reduction in mortality claimed by CMS.

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