Impact of a standardized hand hygiene program on the incidence of nosocomial infection in very low birth weight infants

Maria Grazia Capretti, Fabrizio Sandri, Elisabetta Tridapalli, Silvia Galletti, Elisabetta Petracci, Giacomo Faldella

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: This study examined the effects of a standardized hand hygiene program on the rate of nosocomial infection (NI) in very low birth weight (VLBW) infants (birth weight <1500 g) admitted to our neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Methods: We compared the rate of NI in VLBW infants in 2 separate periods. In the first period, staff were encouraged to perform handwashing using a plain fluid detergent (0.5% triclosan). In the second period, a standardized hand hygiene program was implemented using antimicrobial soap (4% chlorhexidine gluconate) and alcohol-based hand rubs. Results: NI after 72 hours of life was detected in 16 of the 85 VLBW infants in the first period and in 5 of the 80 VLBW infants in the second period. The rate of central venous catheter colonization was significantly lower in the second period (5.8%) than in the first period (16.6%). Conclusion: In our NICU, the incidence of NI in VLBW infants was significantly reduced after the introduction of a standardized handwashing protocol. In our experience, a proper hand hygiene program can save approximately 10 NI episodes/year, at a cost of $10,000 per episode. Therefore, improving hand hygiene practice is a cost-effective program in the NICU.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)430-435
Number of pages6
JournalAJIC: American Journal of Infection Control
Volume36
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2008

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Hand Hygiene
Very Low Birth Weight Infant
Cross Infection
Neonatal Intensive Care Units
Incidence
Hand Disinfection
Triclosan
Costs and Cost Analysis
Soaps
Central Venous Catheters
Birth Weight
Detergents
Hand
Alcohols

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Infectious Diseases

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Impact of a standardized hand hygiene program on the incidence of nosocomial infection in very low birth weight infants. / Capretti, Maria Grazia; Sandri, Fabrizio; Tridapalli, Elisabetta; Galletti, Silvia; Petracci, Elisabetta; Faldella, Giacomo.

In: AJIC: American Journal of Infection Control, Vol. 36, No. 6, 08.2008, p. 430-435.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Capretti, Maria Grazia ; Sandri, Fabrizio ; Tridapalli, Elisabetta ; Galletti, Silvia ; Petracci, Elisabetta ; Faldella, Giacomo. / Impact of a standardized hand hygiene program on the incidence of nosocomial infection in very low birth weight infants. In: AJIC: American Journal of Infection Control. 2008 ; Vol. 36, No. 6. pp. 430-435.
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