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Healthcare-Associated Infections

HAI Elimination

Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAIs) are infections that occur during, or as a consequence of, healthcare.  In recent years, interest in HAIs has grown steadily in the United States among consumers, legislators, providers, payers and regulatory/accreditation organizations focusing on patient safety and performance improvement.

HAIs are a major clinical and public health problem across the spectrum of healthcare settings that results in high morbidity, mortality and cost.  Based on national estimates1, HAIs affect 5 to 10 percent of Ohio hospitalized patients annually and result in over 80 thousand infections and nearly 4 thousand deaths.

State health departments have traditionally had limited funding or workforce directly targeted to HAI issues.  However, in recent years, more than 28 states, including Ohio, have passed laws requiring reporting of hospital-specific HAI data to state health departments with public disclosure of hospital infection rates.

In January, 2009, Health and Human Services (HHS) released the HHS Action Plan to prevent HAIs.  Each state has been encouraged to develop a HAI Prevention Plan.  Please use the link to access Ohio’s HAI Prevention Plan.

1 McKibben, L., et.al., AJIC 2005:33:4, 217-226.

 

Last updated:  08/13/12