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Educational Interventions to Reduce the Rate of Central Catheter–Related Bloodstream Infections in the NICU: A Review of the Research Literature

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Catheter–related bloodstream infections (CR-BSIs) are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in the NICU, occurring at rates ranging from 11.3 per 1,000 catheter days in infants <1,000 g to 4 per 1,000 catheter days in infants >2,500 g. Cost-effective and successful educational interventions aimed at nurses have been shown to decrease CR-BSIs with adults, but no such studies address neonatal nurses. This literature review examined how educational interventions could help neonatal nurses reduce infection rates in patients with central venous catheters. Four databases were searched: PubMed, CINAHL, Cochrane, and OVID. Of ten studies that measured CR-BSIs before and after educational interventions, nine showed a postintervention reduction in the rate of CR-BSIs of 40 percent or greater (eight demonstrating statistically significant reductions), and the tenth reported a reduction rate of 21 percent. All of the educational programs had additional intervention components, so it is not possible to ascribe all the success to the education, but this review suggests that this topic needs to be studied with the NICU population.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2009

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