BACKGROUND: Healthcare-Associated Infections are a great concern for worldwide healthcare systems and represent a considerable threat to patient safety, leading to adverse clinical outcomes. A defined panel of indicators represents a key element to guide Healthcare Organizations towards identification of main gaps, implementation of effective actions and continuous improvements on Healthcare-Associated Infections prevention and control activities. A review on accreditation systems conducted by the Italian Study Group of Hospital Hygiene of the Italian Society of Hygiene Preventive Medicine and Public Health revealed a substantial heterogeneity of implemented standards and led to the development of a core set of indicators and requirements for Healthcare-Associated Infections' prevention and control within the hospital setting. The main aim of the study was to test the feasibility of the Healthcare-Associated Infections' prevention and control within the hospital setting tool to calculate performance scores on a sample of Italian Healthcare Organizations and to identify major critical issues. The potential benefits of the possibility of future implementation of the tool within Institutional Accreditation Programs is discussed.
STUDY DESIGN: Cross sectional pilot survey.
METHODS: The Healthcare-Associated Infections' prevention and control within the hospital setting included 96 criteria and 20 key areas including an area for outcomes indicators. For applicable criteria, standards fulfilment was evaluated according to a 4 point Likert scale. A composite score was calculated for each Healthcare Organization and five performance levels were identified. Data were further analysed by computing performance scores at the level of each area and requirement.
RESULTS: 20 Healthcare Organizations agreed to take part in this pilot study including two rehabilitative Healthcare Organizations. Among the whole sample a mean of 12.20% of requirements resulted not fulfilled, leaving space for further improvements. Critical areas were easily identified and the instrument was able to capture substantial differences between Healthcare Organizations. Only a few number of standards resulted "Not Applicable" (Mean = 4.71%) and most of them regarded Rehabilitative Healthcare Organizations. Mean composite performance index resulted 74.06% (SD = 16.96, range 36.30 - 94.27%); area of outcome indicators obtained a mean score of 56.17.
CONCLUSION: The Healthcare-Associated Infections' prevention and control within the hospital setting resulted an useful tool to assess Healthcare Organizations' performance in the field of Healthcare-Associated Infections prevention and control and to identify necessary actions for further improvements. The distribution of total scores by Healthcare Organizations showed a high heterogeneity. Implementation of the Healthcare-Associated Infections' prevention and control within the hospital setting tool as an institutional accreditation tool may help to drive the required harmonization at a national level of Healthcare-Associated Infections management and control strategies and overcome current substantial regional differences.
|Number of pages||16|
|Journal||Annali di igiene : medicina preventiva e di comunita|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 1 2018|
- Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAIs)
- Institutional accreditation
- Performance assessment
- Quality improvement
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Infectious Diseases