November 23, 2015
Variability in Barrier Precautions Use Raises Red Flag About Arterial Catheter Infection Risk
An expert in medical device-related infections is trying to raise awareness of the variability that exists in following guidelines designed to help prevent catheter-associated infections, particularly in arterial catheters (ACs) used in intensive care units (ICUs) and operating rooms (ORs). Leonard A. Mermel, DO, ScM, medical director of the epidemiology and infection control department at Rhode Island Hospital, and his colleagues recently published results of a survey (Cohen, et al. 2015) showing significant variability regarding how clinicians manage arterial catheters in ICU patients and that these practices may increase risk of infection.