FCG's Healthcare Industry News Summary: "Manual surveillance to identify nosocomial infections in hospitals is a costly and labor-intensive approach that often identifies outbreaks weeks after the initial occurrence. Kadlec Medical Center (172-bed) in Richland, WA, implemented a computerized data-mining service by MedMined (a co-author of the article) to accomplish the same task by automatically polling patient information in the hospital’s databases (including admissions and test results) and analyzing it for infection trends. Through this effort and the associated analysis, the facility uncovered the following findings:
* Its incidence of nosocomial infections (including urinary tract, wound, respiratory and bloodstream infections) decreased by 13 percent;
* Hospital-wide ventilator-associated pneumonia went to zero for more than a year; and
* The hospital experienced a variable cost for each patient with an infection of $9,589, with an average length-of-stay of 7.02 days longer than those without.
(Meek, Computerize Your Infection Surveillance for Improved Patient Care – and Savings, HFM, p. 108-112, December 2006; subscription required)"