Process Failures – Increased Risk of Infection

Angie SzumlinskiStudies

In the United States, an estimated 21 million patients seek medical treatment for respiratory infections each year. Severe respiratory infections such as croup, bronchiolitis, and pneumonia are caused by bacterial and viral agents spread through respiratory droplets. Most viral pneumonias in the United States are caused by influenza and hospital associated infectious agents through respiratory droplets.

In order to determine the types of process failures that may place patients and staff at the greatest risk for exposure to infectious agents that cause respiratory infections or are spread through respiratory droplets, a study was conducted, examining the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Reporting System (PA-PSRS) that were related to failures in the processes of early identification and prevention of the spread of infectious agents through respiratory droplets.

The study identified process failures related to identification, isolation and treatment for infectious agents spread through respiratory droplets in hospital settings. We highly encourage you to read the full study to learn about process failures and how to improve your internal infection control processes. Remember, stopping one infectious agent from spreading to our residents and staff is the key. Good, solid, validated processes will help us do that!

Stay well, stay safe and stay tuned!