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Open Access Research

The impact of staffing on central venous catheter-associated bloodstream infections in preterm neonates – results of nation-wide cohort study in Germany

Rasmus Leistner*, Sarah Thürnagel, Frank Schwab, Brar Piening, Petra Gastmeier and Christine Geffers

Author Affiliations

Institute of Hygiene and Environmental Medicine, German National Reference Center for the Surveillance of Healthcare-Associated Infections, Charité University Medicine Berlin, Hindenburgdamm 27, Berlin, Germany, 12203, Germany

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Antimicrobial Resistance and Infection Control 2013, 2:11  doi:10.1186/2047-2994-2-11

Published: 4 April 2013

Abstract

Background

Very low birthweight (VLBW) newborns on neonatal intensive care units (NICU) are at increased risk for developing central venous catheter-associated bloodstream infections (CVC BSI). In addition to the established intrinsic risk factors of VLBW newborns, it is still not clear which process and structure parameters within NICUs influence the prevalence of CVC BSI.

Methods

The study population consisted of VLBW newborns from NICUs that participated in the German nosocomial infection surveillance system for preterm infants (NEO-KISS) from January 2008 to June 2009. Structure and process parameters of NICUs were obtained by a questionnaire-based enquiry. Patient based date and the occurrence of BSI derived from the NEO-KISS database. The association between the requested parameters and the occurrance of CVC BSI and laboratory-confirmed BSI was analyzed by generalized estimating equations.

Results

We analyzed data on 5,586 VLBW infants from 108 NICUs and found 954 BSI cases in 847 infants. Of all BSI cases, 414 (43%) were CVC-associated. The pooled incidence density of CVC BSI was 8.3 per 1,000 CVC days. The pooled CVC utilization ratio was 24.3 CVC-days per 100 patient days. A low realized staffing rate lead to an increased risk of CVC BSI (OR 1.47; p=0.008) and also of laboratory-confirmed CVC BSI (OR 1.78; p=0.028).

Conclusions

Our findings show that low levels of realized staffing are associated with increased rates of CVC BSI on NICUs. Further studies are necessary to determine a threshold that should not be undercut.

Keywords:
Staffing; CVC; BSI; NICU; VLBW