PDI Perspective

Get perspective on infection prevention from PDI's experts.

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There’s a Guide For That!

Posted by Frances (Fran) K. Canty, MA, BSN, RN, VA-BC™ on Oct 1, 2018 12:01:00 PM

Guidance Supporting Practice for Environmental Cleaning and Disinfection

An admission to the hospital is an unnerving experience for both patients and their families. Patients are hopeful that their hospital experience will mitigate the issues surrounding their illness.  However, that is often not the outcome. Statistics show that the hospital environment itself may be the cause of additional infections and subsequent illnesses. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an alarming 1 in 25 hospitalized patients acquire at least one healthcare-associated infection (HAI).(1.)

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Multi-pronged Approaches to Environmental Decontamination

Posted by Amanda Thornton, RN, MSN on Sep 4, 2018 8:12:00 AM

There is a lot of evidence showing transmission of pathogens both from surfaces in the healthcare setting as well as on patient and healthcare workers hands as a result of a contaminated environment (1).  To truly mitigate this risk institutions cannot rely on just one method or approach to environmental decontamination.  Rather, a multi-pronged approach must be considered as the new “gold standard” which would include an environmental cleaning program with proven practices to reduce the transmission of organisms, a robust hand hygiene program for both staff, patients, and visitors, and the inclusion of new novel approaches such as UV technology which show proven reduction in organisms on treated surfaces (2).  By utilizing a multi-pronged approach as the new standard of care, facilities are helping to decrease the risk of healthcare associated infections (HAI’s) in the hospital setting that come from a contaminated environment.

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Clostridium difficile: Is there an Infection Prevention Sweet Spot based on Hospital Occupancy?

Posted by Holly Montejano, MS, CIC, CPHQ on Aug 1, 2018 9:15:00 AM

Patients do not go to the hospital with pneumonia, a heart attack, or any other medical emergency, expecting to become sicker with a diarrheal illness!  Being hospitalized is not without its own risks- including being exposed to additional infections.  We know the common variables related to Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) for hospitalized patients—staff, patient and visitor hand hygiene, antibiotic use, and environmental cleaning and disinfection.  A new variable has recently been studied in the CDI risk portfolio—hospital occupancy—and the results are interesting!

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The Nose Knows

Posted by Joan Hebden, RN, MS, CIC, FAPIC on May 27, 2018 10:05:00 AM

Addressing Surgical Site Infection Prevention & Antibiotic Stewardship Through Povidone-Iodine Antiseptic Nasal Decolonization

Decolonization is an evidence-based patient safety practice with the goal of lowering the microbial bio-burden on patient body sites to reduce the risk of infection from endogenous colonization during surgery. 

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The Contaminant Conundrum:  Reducing Blood Culture Contamination

Posted by Deva Rea, MPH, BSN, BS, RN, CIC on Apr 20, 2018 6:00:00 AM


A new positive blood culture appears on your surveillance. And it appears to be a commensal organism. Or is it? Any Infection Preventionist will admit to having these challenges daily. Blood culture contamination is a problematic issue in healthcare. Not only will a contaminant increase the likelihood of inappropriate & unnecessary antibiotic therapy, it will also potentially add a significant healthcare cost— either to the hospital or to the patient. Avoiding these outcomes is the goal!

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History and Evolution of Surface Disinfectants

Posted by Caitlin Stowe MPH, CPH, CIC, on Mar 30, 2018 12:00:00 PM

Target Goals for the Reduction of Healthcare-Associated Infections: Ambitious But Achievable 


The history of surface cleaning and disinfection is a fascinating story that dates back thousands of years ago, when Egyptians used wine or vinegar to clean.

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Back to Basics in Dealing with Healthcare Outbreaks

Posted by Frances (Fran) K. Canty, MA, BSN, RN, VA-BC™ on Feb 23, 2018 6:00:00 PM

In the midst of the flu season storm, we have become hyper vigilant about alerts on new and multiple outbreaks, and often, with good reason.  The final months of 2017 showed an increase in influenza activity and as 2018 begins, the trend continues upward.[1]

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Target Goals for the Reduction of Healthcare-Associated Infections

Posted by Joan Hebden, RN, MS, CIC, FAPIC on Feb 1, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Target Goals for the Reduction of Healthcare-Associated Infections: Ambitious But Achievable 

In October 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced new targets using data from calendar year 2015 as a new reference point for the national acute care hospital metrics for the National Action Plan to Prevent Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAIs). 

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Preventing Legionnaires Disease

Posted by Amanda Thornton, RN, MSN on Dec 20, 2017 3:00:00 PM

Did you know that one in ten persons who contract the Legionnaires disease will die from it? (1). Although it’s rare that we would even think of Legionnaires; When it rears its ugly head the results can be disastrous for those who are exposed. 

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Hepatitis A Virus: Wreaking Havoc for Public Health

Posted by Holly Montejano, MS, CIC, CPHQ on Nov 28, 2017 10:30:00 AM

Hepatitis A virus  is not for the faint of heart!  This highly contagious and vaccine-preventable virus attacks the liver, with symptoms including fever, jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), stomach pain, lack of appetite and nausea, and for otherwise healthy individuals, reaching the road to recovery could take several weeks (1).  Young children often have no symptoms of the illness.  However, for those with underlying liver issues this illness can lead to liver failure and even death (1).

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