Other Healthcare Associated Infections Measures

Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Blood Infections

What are we measuring and why?

Healthcare associated infections (HAI) are infections that patients acquire while receiving medical treatment in a healthcare facility. These infections are often harmful and costly to treat, but can usually be prevented through the use of proper precautions and infection control practices. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) publishes hospital HAI results, which are increasingly used to assess the quality and safety of patient care. Data are reported as a standardized infection ratio (SIR), which compares a hospital’s observed number of infections to its predicted number of infections, after adjusting for institutional characteristics known to cause differences in incidence. A lower SIR is better, with the ultimate goal of zero infections.

How are we doing and how do we compare to best practice?

Staphylococcus aureus (Staph) is a common bacterium that is present in the nose or on the skin of about one quarter of healthy adults at any given time. Though generally harmless, Staph occasionally causes infections that are treated with antibiotics. Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) is a strain of Staph that is resistant to certain antibiotics, which can make MRSA infections more difficult to treat. In healthcare settings, MRSA is often spread through direct contact with an infection or contaminated hands; therefore, it is important that hospital staff take appropriate precautions to reduce the transmission of MRSA and prevent associated complications.

Publicly reported hospital-onset MRSA events are identified through laboratory testing and defined as MRSA-positive blood specimens collected four or more days after inpatient admission. In 2017, MGH’s MRSA SIR (0.79) was statistically similar to the national benchmark (1.0).

  • Current Scores
  • Scores Over Time
  • Lower values are better
0.87 0.79

MGH Source: National Healthcare Safety Network
Comparison Group Source: CMS Hospital Compare

MGH: Jan - Dec 2017
CMS: Jan - Dec 2017

0.8 0.87 0.79 1.35 0.95 0.87

MGH Source: National Healthcare Safety Network
Comparison Group Source: CMS Hospital Compare

What are we doing to improve?

Hospital-wide increases in hand hygiene compliance have led to a substantial drop in new cases of MRSA at MGH. Several additional infection control practices are contributing to the overall success of this effort. These include:

·          Surveillance systems to track bacterial outbreaks

·          Isolation of infected patients, use of protective garments, and other precautionary techniques


« Previous Page