Continuous Quality Care Surgical Site Infection

‘The Never Events’ are Preventable According to a press release dated 31 July 2008 from the CMS Office of Public Affairs (2008), the ‘never events’ are preventable medical errors that result in serious consequences for the patient. As a result, such events cause serious injury or death to the beneficiaries and unnecessary costs to the Medicare and Medicaid systems. According to CMS (2008), hospital-acquired conditions (HACs) are the conditions which were absent before admission and developed during the hospital stay. The benefit is that this step will make hospitals improve the reliability of care they provide to patients. What is Surgical Site Infection (SSI)? A surgical site infection (SSI) can be defined as the infection that occurs after surgery in the place where the surgery was conducted. It is estimated that nearly 1-3 patients out of every 100 patients who had surgery develop SSI. Surgical Site Infection takes place because during surgery, one of the body’s most important protective covering-the skin- is opened. As a result, pathogens from the patient’s body, environment, or surgical instruments easily enter the body through the incision made during the surgery and cause infection. Surgical Site Infections can be minor or serious. Sometimes, the infections go superficial covering only the skin, and sometimes, such infections become serious affecting organs and even implanted material, leading to serious illness and even death. The symptoms of surgical site infections include redness, pain, drainage of cloudy fluid, fever, and so on. In fact, the chances for surgical site infections increase if the patient has an existing health problem and if the surgical site is not properly cleaned. Thirdly, the longer the surgical procedure is, the higher the infection chances will be. Various Studies According to the information provided by COLLATAMPG (n. d.), nearly 40-60% of the present surgical site infections are preventable. Brown et al (2009) point out that not all surgical site infections are preventable. To illustrate, based on a study, the scholars prove that only 40-60% of the surgical site infections are preventable. Also, it is noted that timely prophylaxis is not linked to surgical site infection rates in orthopedic surgeries. In addition, providing antibiotics in time is not associated with the rate of surgical site infection. However, there is the observation that using the available techniques, it is not possible to reduce the incidence of surgical site infections to zero. To illustrate, Brown et al (2009) point out that 40-60% of the surgical site infections are preventable. Based on studies, the scholars point out that timely prophylaxis is not linked to reduced rates of surgical site infections in orthopedic surgeries. Similarly, timely antibiotics intake is not connected with surgical site infection rate. However, it was possible to reduce the vascular catheter-associated infections in adult patients by 56% when the ‘best available prevention techniques’ were used (Brown et al 2009). Similarly, Nichols and Florman (2001) look