Spread the Word: Aseptic Technique Prevents Infection

As pharmacists and technicians, we are an integral part of the delivery of health care to patients in a variety of practice settings. One of the most important changes that we can actively contribute to is the “Targeting Zero” initiative, created by the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) to prevent the most common and fatal healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).1
HAIs in US hospitals account for an estimated two million infections and 90,000 deaths annually with an estimated cost of $20 billion.2 This is equivalent to a Boeing 747 crashing every day of the year. The CDC estimates the most common HAIs are urinary tract infections (32%), surgical site infections (22%), pneumonias (15%), and bloodstream infections (BSIs) (14%).1 Each year, an estimated 250,000 cases of central line-associated (i.e., central venous catheter-associated) BSIs occur in hospitals in the United States, with an estimated attributable mortality of 12% to 25% for each infection. The marginal cost to the health care system is approximately $25,000 per episode.2


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