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Infection Prevention Product Solutions: Support for practice at critical points in care
Kathryn Topley (Clinical Efficiency Manager, Infection Prevention Division 3M) [Pictured]
Infections have long posed a serious risk to our health and well being. As we approach an era where antibiotics potentially cannot offer the protection long taken for granted1 the importance of infection prevention practice and associated research is a priority. Healthcare associated infection (HCAI) is a significant group of infections that are essentially an adverse outcome for patients. The 2011 prevalence survey in England identified that 6.8 % of patients acquire an infection whilst in hospital. Of these, 15.7% are surgical site infections2.
Surgical Site Infection (SSI)
There are important elements of care that must be followed to reduce the risk of SSI a ‘Care Bundle’, an approach that has become increasingly widespread in the UK3,4 Figure 1. sets out the SSI Care Bundle that reflects crucial elements of clinical care, and supported by NICE guidance and other national guidance5,6,7,8,9:
The role of Partnerships to strengthen effective solutions
Implementation of a Care Bundle is multifaceted and can be challenging. At every step of the Care Bundle there is a product or technology that facilitates success or a solution to achieve that intervention. In practice, this relates to a minimum of 14 products for the SSI Care Bundle. It is an intricate mix of IT systems, product and clinical care, used in synergy that results in our ability to deliver all elements of the SSI Care Bundle.
Close working between and good relationships with industry and healthcare providers remain as relevant as it has always been. To adapt and respond to future requirements in healthcare, consideration of partnerships must be central to a joined up approach: Industry must be able to identify its position in Infection Prevention and be able to demonstrate and evaluate the level of impact its input has to reducing HCAI.
The plan to establish a NHS Life Sciences Innovation Delivery Board10 supports a progressive relationship between industry and healthcare. Similarly the Infection Prevention Society has incorporated an objective of reviewing its relationship with industry into its 2013 business plan11. These opportunities, if embraced will provide a rich mix of clinical knowledge and skill that can be fully engaged in shaping our ability to ensure excellent infection prevention practice is the standard of care and treatment that all patients are assured of, at all times and throughout any healthcare experience they may have.
- DH (2013) Annual Report 2011 of the Chief Medical Officer Part 2
- HPA (2011) English National Point Prevalence Survey on Healthcare-associated Infections and Antimicrobial Use, 2011
- DH(2011)Clean Safe Care
- HPS (2012) Part of HAI Delivery Plan 2011-2012: Task 6.1: Review of existing infection prevention and control quality improvement tools to ensure ongoing need and fitness for purpose
- NICE (2008) Surgical site infection prevention and treatment of surgical site infection guidance.
- NICE (2008) The management of inadvertent perioperative hypothermia in adults, clinical practice guideline
- Department of Health (2008) MRSA screening – operational guidance. London: DH. Available from:
- Department of Health (2008) MRSA screening – operational guidance 2. London: DH. Available from:
- Department of Health (2006) Screening for MRSA colonisation: a summary of best practice, Professional Letter from the Chief Medical Officer and the Chief Nursing Officer. London: DH.
Available from: www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Lettersandcirculars/Professionalletters/Chiefmedicalofficerletters/DH_063138
- DH (2009) NHS 2010–2015: From Good to Great: Preventative.People-centred. Productive.
- IPS (2013) IPS Board Business Plan Business plan