About 5–10% of patients admitted to acute care hospitals and long-term care facilities in the United States develop a hospital-acquired, or nosocomial, infection. With the excellent care that children at Maryville Children’s Healthcare center receive, there has only been a quarter of this percentage rate seen in our patients. Hospital-acquired infections are usually related to a procedure or treatment used to diagnose or treat the patient’s initial illness or injury. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has shown that about 36% of these infections are preventable when health care workers adhere to strict guidelines when caring for patients.
Maryville Children’s Healthcare Center is vigilant in avoiding infections. We are diligent in our efforts to minimize the risks to the children in our care.
Based on the medical complexity of our patients and the widespread use of catheters and other devices in their treatment, we closely monitor the occurrence of catheter associated infections. In particular gastric catheters since numerous medically fragile children have some form of a gastric catheter for some period in their lives.
To gauge our performance, the Healthcare Center uses comparative data from the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN), the surveillance system of the CDC. It should be noted that there is no current national database for long-term acute care hospitals available to the public. The NHSN reflects voluntary membership by a sample of acute care hospitals across the U.S. The Center uses the benchmarks for infection rates established for a Medical ICU.
The NHSN calculation for each infection is as follows:
Number of device-associated infections x 1000 = Rate of infection per 1000 device days
Number of device days
The 50th percentile marks the national median. This means that half of the hospitals reporting have lower rates of infection and half have higher.
Gastric Catheter/ Tubing Infection Rates (Also called Gastrostomy tube; G-tube; PEG tube; Stomach tube; Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tube or feeding tubes)
Gastrostomy feeding tubes are used for various reasons. They may be needed for a short while or permanently. This procedure may be recommended for:
- Babies with birth defects of the mouth, esophagus, or stomach (for example, esophageal atresia or tracheal esophageal fistula)
- Patients who cannot swallow correctly
- Patients who cannot take enough food by mouth to stay healthy
- Patients who often breathe in food when eating
Feeding tubes may be inserted through the nasal passageway for short-term use, but for those patients who require longer use of the tube, it is customary to place the tube directly into the stomach through the abdominal wall. This second method is called a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tube. The feeding tube may also be put in place in anticipation of other treatments such as radiation or chemotherapy, allowing the patient to adapt to its use prior to treatments. Feeding tubes are not painful and are not easily visible when wearing normal clothes. When not in use, they can simple be taped to the patients stomach to prevent them from moving around under clothing.
Infections as well as skin break down in the immediate surrounding area are very common with these tubes.