New Reporting Requirements to Help Reduce Hospital Acquired Infections

Hospital infections are a leading cause of death among patients in American hospitals.

A few simple changes could drastically reduce infection and death:

Keep the surgery ward absolutely sterile

Fumigate the operation theater after every surgery

Autoclave or sterilize all the equipment after every surgery

Use disposal equipment whenever possible

Recovery ward should be kept clean and hygienic

Maintain the hygiene of diabetics and low immunity patients

Keep the necessary emergency drugs at hand to combat the infection effectively and promptly

Train the hospital staff in hygiene maintenance during and after surgeries

Switching from stainless steel to copper fittings could reduce spread of infection by as much as 40% according to recent reports

To tackle this serious menace, the federal government has introduced a new reporting system that will be available to the general public for evaluation. In addition, from 2013, those hospitals that have improper records and fail to follow the norms will face a 2% loss of Medicare funding. Surgery records have to be compulsorily updated and reported till the case is closed. An estimated two million contract hospitals acquired infections and spend about $6.5 billion extra to treat such affected patients.
The hospitals will now have stringent norms to follow and it has been made compulsory that they report all the cases of nosocomial infections or hospital related infections and the number of deaths thereafter. This will give an idea as to which areas and hospitals are more prone tro these types of infections and steps can be taken to curb these. Using faulty catheters, improper sterilization of tracheostomy tubes, and other methods of intervention are the major causes of hospital related infections.

Government Crack-Down on Hand Sanitizer Claims

Labeling and marketing materials for hand sanitizers claim that they can prevent infection from disease-causing germs and viruses, and some claim to protect against E. coli and the H1N1 swine flu virus.

There is no proof to support these claims and the companies are marketing them in violation of federal law.

Federal regulators are warning companies that make over-the-counter hand sanitizers to stop exaggerating the bacteria-killing benefits of their products

Hand sanitizer and other over-the-counter products can’t prevent dangerous staph infections no matter what they claim, federal officials warned Wednesday.

The Food and Drug Administration ordered four companies that make such promises to change their marketing practices, arguing there is no proof the store-bought products prevent H1N1, MRSA or E. coli – as they suggest.

The products include Staphaseptic First Aid Antiseptic/Pain Relieving Gel, Safe4Hours Hand Sanitizing Lotion, Dr. Tichenor’s Antiseptic Gel and CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizing Wipes.

The manufacturers were given 15 days to change labeling and marketing material or face seizure of products.

Sleeping next to your pet can be harmful

You shouldn’t have your pet sleeping with you in your bed. It’s unsanitary. It seems like common sense but many people do it. Now there’s a study explaining the health risks.

Sleeping alongside your pets can make you sick.

It’s rare, but it happens. That’s why good hygiene means keeping Fluffy and Spot next to the bed, not on it, two experts in animal-human disease transmission say in a forthcoming paper.

Chomel and co-author Ben Sun, chief veterinarian with the California Department of Public Health, did an extensive search of medical journals and turned up a hair-raising list of possible pathogens.

There’s plague (yes, bubonic plague, i.e. the Black Death); chagas disease, which can cause life-threatening heart and digestive system disorders; and cat-scratch disease, which can also come from being licked by infected cats.

Though many people love getting licked or planting a kiss on a pet, it may not be such a good idea, the authors say.

The researchers found several cases of various infections transmitted this way.

“The risk is rare, but when it occurs it can be very nasty, and especially in immuno-compromised people and the very young,” says Chomel, who specializes in zoonoses, the study of disease transmission between animals and humans.

Larry Kornegay, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association, called the article “pretty balanced.” These cases are “uncommon if not rare,” but even so, pet owners should use common sense to reduce risks.

Think about your health the next time your pet jumps into your bed.

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