Healthcare-Associated Infections in Surgical Practice

  • Scott J. Ellner
  • Affan Umer


Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) pose a unique challenge that requires engagement from all tiers of healthcare organizations. The solution relies on implementing infection prevention policies that acknowledge the interaction between biologic and structural factors that contribute to HAIs. Additional dynamics require understanding and reforming organizational culture, which can be harder than expected. Institutional capacity to endorse patient safety is paramount to sustainable change and is closely tethered to the degree of attainable success.

This chapter aims to review some of the most common HAIs encountered in surgical practice and their impact on the healthcare economy. The discussion involves key details of each HAI followed by a review of preventive strategies. The latter addresses available evidence-based guidelines, novel technologies, and avenues for further research and growth.

Finally, we highlight how state and federal institutions have invested through health policy agencies and independent patient safety actors to develop a robust network that measures quality of care, thus sharing the responsibility for patient safety.


Healthcare-associated infections Catheter-associated urinary tract infections Catheter-related bloodstream infections Surgical site infections Clostridium difficile infections Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea Hospital-acquired pneumonia Ventilator-associated pneumonia American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program Patient safety 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centura Health Physician GroupCentura HealthCentennialUSA
  2. 2.Department of SurgerySaint Francis Hospital and Medical CenterHartfordUSA

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