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Pauline Harrington speaks on the SSI quality standard and monitoring and surveillance

Pauline HarringtonPauline Harrington

Pauline began the presentation by focusing on how surgical site infection is the third most common Health Care Associated Infection (HCAI), and accounts for 16% of all HCAIs and can cause patients extreme pain and discomfort (Plowman et al 2001, Coello et al 2005). Furthermore, it can lead to extended hospital stay and will generate added cost to the NHS. Approximately 700 million pounds a year are spent by the NHS to treat patients with SSIs in acute care facilities (HPA 2012, National Audit Office 2000 and Under the Knife 2011). Pauline advised there is a variety of evidence based guidelines available to assist in the prevention of SSIs and the implementation of NICE Quality Standards for Surgical Site Infection can help in reducing the incidence of surgical site infection. 

The presentation went on to discuss the implementation of the quality standards requires strong leadership and multidisciplinary team working.  Auditing of the implementation of the quality standards enables early recognition of problems. Pauline concluded the presentation by looking at implementing quality statement 7 (People having surgery are cared for by healthcare providers that monitor surgical site infection rates (including post-discharge infections) and provide feedback to relevant staff and stakeholders for continuous improvement through adjustment of clinical practice) can identify increases in the rates of SSIs at an early stage so that appropriate measures could be taken to reduce the incidence of infection. 

Key points form presentation summarised:
- Risk does not equal infection. You may have a higher risk of developing but does not mean it could not have been prevented
- WHO Surgical Safety Checklist-could save half a million lives a year worldwide if implemented: "But make sure these things are happening, not just a tick box exercise"
- 7 NICE Quality Standards, why implement? Ensure patients receive the best and most appropriate treatment/care.  The 7 statements are key priorities as there is sufficient evidence to demonstrate that by implementing these statements can lead to the reduction of the incidence of SSIs
- Surgical Site Infection Surveillance participation: now 394 hospitals in England registered (281 NHS / 113 independent)
- Implementing Surveillance effectively: "Strive to be the best BUT if you think you don't have a problem you will never find a problem". 
-  Public Health England are here to help

- Post discharge surveillance now included in data, very important, particularly for categories with short length of stay
- Public Health England do supply a free leaflet on 'post discharge infection' for those participating in surveillance for PHE

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Download: Pauline Harrington's Presentation

16 September 2014


    Partner Organisations

    The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation TrustInPracticeClinical Audit Support CentrePlayoutJust For Nurses
    GGI (Good Governance Institute) accredited conferences CPD Member ASGBI (Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland) professional partner BADS (British Association of Day Surgery) accredited conferences