HAI 101. HEALTHCARE ASSOCIATED INFECTIONS
Healthcare Associated Infections (HAIs), also called nosocomial infections, are infections that first appear between 48 hours and four days after a patient is admitted to a hospital or other health care facility. They include urinary tract, surgical site, lung and bloodstream infections. Despite the steps taken to reduce HAIs, they still remain one of the world’s leading and most costly healthcare challenges. Most are preventable. All are extremely costly in human and financial terms.
THE HUMAN COST OF HAIs
Each year, nearly 2 million1 patients in the U.S. acquire an infection while in a healthcare setting, and 75,0002 die as a result. It’s also estimated that 70% of HAI-causing bacteria are drug-resistant.
THE FINANCIAL COST OF HAIs
Hospital stays for patients who acquire a healthcare related infection in the US increase an average of 7-10 days, at an incremental treatment cost of over $30,000 per patient3. The total annual cost to the healthcare industry totals nearly $45 billion4 — again, much of which is preventable.
New coverage regulations from CMS will eliminate reimbursement for certain HAIs deemed preventable, which is why it’s more critical than ever to practice comprehensive infection prevention activities.
WHAT IS OUR ROLE IN THE GOAL TOWARDS ZERO HAIs?