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Nursing - Essay Example

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Research asserts that central line-associated bloodstream infections are still considered one of the most lethal infections in the United States (Harnage, 2007). Most patients in the United States find it extremely costly to treat the disease…
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Download file to see previous pages One of the most common strategies that have been employed in hospitals to curb this predicament is the nursing competency assessment, especially in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit). This strategy is significantly striving to eliminate this deadly infection. This article will review literatures which analyze the ongoing versus annual nursing competency assessments that are aimed at decreasing the number of central line blood stream infections in the ICU. It is estimated that approximately 41,000 central line-associated bloodstream infections occur yearly in the United States alone. Research shows that these infections are liable for between 4 to 20% of the deaths that occur in the country annually. This shows that between 500 to 40,000 patients die yearly as a result of the bloodstream infections. In most health centers in the US, it is recommended that patients are grouped into the insertion bundle and the care bundle. Experts claim that combining nursing practices and technology can significantly reduce these infections. Most of the hospital teams in the United States have asserted that the nursing competency assessment has significantly reduced the number of patients with bloodstream infections in the Intensive Care Unit (Harnage, 2007). This assessment usually involves educating the nurses on the best approach to employ when handling the patients with these infections. For example, they are usually taught several methods of improving hand hygiene. This measure has empowered hand hygiene as part of the Central Line placement. According to Harnage (2007), most health centers have hand hygiene dispensers which are frequently checked. The assessment of nurses, physicians and other medical personnel is usually accompanied with an annual assessment of the personnel in order to decrease the bloodstream infections in the Intensive Care Unit. This assessment involves a periodical knowledge assessment of adherence to certain guidelines involved in the Intensive Care Unit. In most cases, nurses who are competent in the care of such patients are usually situated in the Intensive Care Unit. After the assessment, these nurses are known as intensive care nurses. This shows that intensive care nurses form an integral part in reducing the bloodstream infections. Most health centers, which aim for a high level of compliance, usually ensure that they prevent such infections. Therefore, nurses should be empowered to supervise the preparations during a line insertion by using a checklist that is aimed at preventing such infections (Harnage, 2007). Hatler, Zack, Hebden and Kaler (2010), noted that it is clear that clinical nurses form an integral part in optimizing the outcomes of a patient especially through monitoring and management of the patient. The bloodstream associated infections have a severe impact on mortality and cost of care. The intensive care nurses are responsible for providing the necessary care to such patients. There are several health centers that have devised other strategies beyond the common Central Line bundle to reduce the number of bloodstream infection in the Intensive Care Units (Richardson & Tjoelker, 2012). Some of the institutions have included a thorough nurse surveillance system. This is a valuable strategy that aims in ensuring optimal patient outcomes. According to a recent survey, this strategy has decreased the rate of deaths in the Intensive Care Unit and the Critical Care Unit significantly. In most instances, these infections usually prolong the hospitalization of a patient to an average of seven days and an approximate cost of between $3700 and $29500 (Richardson & Tjo ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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