Hospital, Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital earn CHAIN Awards
Regions Hospital in St. Paul and Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital in
Minneapolis on Sept. 27 received CHAIN Awards for Excellence, which commend the
infection prevention and antibiotic stewardship efforts of health care teams
working to build safer health care environments. The awards are presented
annually by the Collaborative Healthcare-Associated Infection Network (CHAIN).
Regions Hospital received the CHAIN Award for its Infection Prevention
Isolation Precautions Utilization Improvement Team.
A goal of infection prevention programs is to interrupt transmission of
organisms within health care settings. Regions Hospital had a protocol to
initiate contact precautions for patients either colonized or infected with
specific pathogens including Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus
(MRSA). While this approach is generally supported by the CDC and infection
prevention organizations, it can also lead to patient stress, decreased medical
attention and more adverse events.
Regions began an initiative to reduce unnecessary use of contact precautions
for MRSA in order to improve the patient experience while maintaining a safe
patient care environment. Based on a review of existing literature regarding
the use of isolation and an examination of approaches to MRSA screening, the
hospital determined that its existing policies for isolation and screening were
likely too stringent and that it lacked a standard process to routinely review
admissions for proactive isolation discontinuation.
With the support of leaders, front-line colleagues and the hospital’s Patient
and Family Council, Regions Hospital discontinued routine patient screening for
MRSA in its intensive care units and emphasized horizontal interventions,
including bath treatment with chlorhexidine gluconate – a product that kills
germs – for all inpatients with central lines and preoperatively for all
surgical patients. Similarly, the hospital continues to monitor its robust hand
hygiene program, bundled prevention practices and environmental cleaning to
ensure high compliance.
Supported by a daily review of patients with a history of MRSA, Regions refined
its utilization of vertical interventions. These include contact precautions
for only those patients who met specific risk criteria for MRSA infection as
well as targeted MRSA screening for high-risk populations. Together, these
interventions resulted in no statistically significant change in infections,
indicating that the focus on horizontal measures remained effective with no
unintended consequences from practice changes. The hospital also saw a 16
percent decrease in isolation days for patients and a 54 percent decrease in
The efforts of Regions Hospital led to enhanced care delivery, patient safety
and patient experiences.
Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital’s award-winning program was profiled in last week’s edition of Newsline. return to top
resistant tuberculosis clinical conference call Oct. 16
MHA and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) are partnering
to host a clinical conference call on Oct. 16 from 12-1 p.m. on the current
state of apparently rising multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR TB) cases
particularly striking the elderly Hmong community in Ramsey County.
On the call, participants will review updates on this evolving situation,
identify ways that front-line health care providers can help recognize new
cases and control the spread of infection, and discuss other recommended
systematic interventions. Following the formal presentation, there will be time
for questions and discussion. Questions may be submitted in advance online.
To participate, register in advance online and
dial in using the information below:
For more detailed treatment guidelines and to learn more about TB, visit the MDH website. return to top
recognized for high flu vaccination rates among staff
The Minnesota Department of Health’s (MDH) FluSafe program
celebrated its seventh year with 93 percent of participating hospitals and
nursing homes receiving a blue, red or white ribbon for their efforts to
vaccinate health care workers against flu.
For the 2016-17 season, 148 facilities participated. Of the 138 facilities that
earned ribbons, 66 reached vaccination levels of 90 percent or greater, earning
blue ribbons; 41 were in the 80-89 percent range, earning red ribbons; and 31
reached 70-79 percent, earning white ribbons. A list of MHA members earning
ribbons can be found on the MHA website.
Each year, hospitals and nursing homes across the state commit to preventing
the spread of flu in their facilities by encouraging vaccination of health care
workers. Promoting vaccination of health care staff demonstrates hospitals’ and
health systems’ commitment to patient safety. This simple step protects
patients as well as employees.
More information and resources are available on the MDH website.
return to top
encourages comments on health information exchange by Oct. 31
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) on Oct. 2 released draft recommendations and instructions for submitting comments regarding improving health information exchange (HIE) in
Minnesota. MHA participated in every phase in the development of this study,
which presents one set of recommendations that can be implemented without new
legislation and another set that will need legislative action.
MDH is seeking public comment from hospitals and health systems by Oct. 31 on a
range of legislative options, including changes to the Minnesota Health Records
Act that would facilitate more robust HIE if enacted.
MHA, along with a large coalition of other health care stakeholders, has long
advocated for aligning Minnesota’s Health Records Act with HIPAA standards that
apply in virtually every other state. MHA is pleased that this option is discussed
in the study as option 1, alternative A. Although elements of the other options
may be helpful, no other option leads to the optimal workflow of HIE.
MHA will be commenting in favor of this option and strongly encourages MHA
members to provide their comments to MDH. With questions, contact Mark Sonneborn, vice president, health
information and analytics, MHA, 651-659-1423. return to top
creates fund for hospital employees in Puerto Rico affected by Hurricanes Irma
The American Hospital Association (AHA) on
behalf of the Puerto Rico Hospital Association (PRHA) has established the Care
Fund to provide support to hospital employees in Puerto Rico affected by
Hurricanes Irma and Maria. During the storms and in their ongoing aftermath,
the women and men of Puerto Rico’s hospitals have been doing what comes most
naturally to them – putting patients first – even under very dire
circumstances. They have worked tirelessly to care for others, even while their
own families were in harm’s way.
To learn more about this effort and provide a donation, visit the Care Fund website. return to top