AHRQ Study Examines Ways to Greatly Reduce Presence of C. diff in Hospital Rooms

Electronic Newsletter, Issue 385

AHRQ's Electronic Newsletter summarizes Agency research and programmatic activities.

June 24, 2013

AHRQ Stats

Births by Cesarean section increased by 82 percent between 1997 and 2010, while births of babies by normal delivery decreased 56 percent among women ages 18 to 44. (Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Statistical Brief #148, Most Frequent Conditions in U.S. Hospitals, 2010.)


Today's Headlines

  1. AHRQ Study Examines Ways to Greatly Reduce Presence of C. diff in Hospital Rooms.
  2. July 17 Deadline for Funding Opportunity for Patient Centered Outcomes Research Career Development Program.
  3. Materials From AHRQ Webinar on Falls Prevention Now Available.
  4. Voice Technology Effective in Monitoring Diabetes Safety Events, AHRQ Study Finds.
  5. AHRQ's Innovations Exchange Highlights Models That Integrate Behavioral Health and Primary Care.
  6. Register for July 15 Webinar on Advanced Methods in Delivery System Research.
  7. AHRQ in the professional literature.

1. AHRQ Study Examines Ways to Greatly Reduce Presence of C. diff in Hospital Rooms

Applying a sequence of three interventions to clean and disinfect hospital rooms after the discharge of patients known to have Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) reduced positive cultures from those CDI rooms from 67 percent to 7 percent, according to an AHRQ-supported study published in the May issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology. The study evaluated the implementation of sequential cleaning and disinfection interventions during a 21-month period at a Veterans Affairs medical center. Starting at a baseline of 67 percent for positive cultures from CDI rooms, researchers found that providing education to environmental services personnel and the use of fluorescent markers to provide monitoring and feedback of the thoroughness of cleaning reduced the number of positive cultures to 57 percent. Adding automated ultraviolet radiation devices reduced positive cultures to 35 percent. When the facility also added a daily dedicated disinfection team with supervisory review, positive cultures were reduced to 7 percent. Select to access the PubMed® abstract of the study, titled “An Environmental Disinfection Odyssey: Evaluation of Sequential Interventions to Improve Disinfection of Clostridium difficile Isolation Rooms.”

2. July 17 Deadline for Funding Opportunity for Patient Centered Outcomes Research Career Development Program

Applications are due by July 17 for a new multi-year, large-scale funding opportunity from AHRQ to support institutional mentored career development in patient centered outcomes research (PCOR). PCOR seeks to integrate evidence into health care practice and decisionmaking. Applicants can be academic or non-academic institutions (e.g., health care delivery systems, state and local governments, health plans, and research networks). Select to access more information.

3. Materials From AHRQ Webinar on Falls Prevention Now Available

Materials from an April 18 AHRQ webinar focusing on the research and testing behind AHRQ's Preventing Falls in Hospitals: A Toolkit for Improving Quality of Care are now available on the AHRQ website. Nearly 1 million patients fall in U.S. hospitals each year. The toolkit is a guide that can help hospitals develop, implement, and sustain a falls prevention program. The toolkit offers hospital clinical staff 35 evidence-based tools for falls prevention. The newly posted information, which includes audio from the webinar, slides, and a written transcript, demonstrates how these evidence-based tools were pilot tested to ensure they were realistically implementable, easy to use, and broadly applicable in the acute-care setting. Also presented are the challenges and opportunities experienced by pilot facilities Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River, Massachusetts, and Augusta Health in Fishersville, Virginia. Select to access the complete Preventing Falls in Hospitals toolkit.

4. Voice Technology Effective in Monitoring Diabetes Safety Events, AHRQ Study Finds

AHRQ has published the second Evaluation Highlight of the CHIPRA Quality Demonstration Grant Program. The new Evaluation Highlight examines the measurement of medical homes in selected demonstration States. It also describes the development of the Medical Home Index-Revised Short Form, an adaptation of the Medical Home Index, which is being used to evaluate the demonstration projects. Select to access the Evaluation Highlight, titled How are States and evaluators measuring medical homeness in the CHIPRA Quality Demonstration Grant Program? Additional reports and resources are available on the national evaluation Web page.

5. AHRQ's Innovations Exchange Highlights Models That Integrate Behavioral Health and Primary Care

The latest issue of AHRQ's Health Care Innovations Exchange profiles programs that have successfully implemented new integrated primary care models. One Minnesota program redesigned the way primary care practices identify, treat, and get paid for providing mental health services. Collaborating with non-profit health plans, multiple medical groups, the Minnesota Department of Human Services, employers, and patients, the Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement developed a more efficient system for the treatment of patients with depression. Known as Depression Improvement Across Minnesota Offering a New Direction, or DIAMOND, health plans pay practices a flat monthly rate for providing a bundled set of services to eligible patients. Practices follow the DIAMOND care model and receive monthly performance reports based on monthly process and outcomes data measures for depression care. The initiative has resulted in high levels of remission and treatment response among patients and high levels of provider satisfaction. Access more innovation profiles and tools related to integrated primary care on the Innovations Exchange Web site, which contains more than 775 searchable innovations and 1,525 Quality Tools.

6. Register for July 15 Webinar on Advanced Methods in Delivery System Research

An upcoming AHRQ webinar will focus on formative evaluation, a process that occurs before or during a project's implementation to improve its design and performance. The webinar, to be held on July 15 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. EDT, will feature Jeffrey Smith, Ph.D., Implementation Research Coordinator of the Veterans Administration (VA) Mental Health Quality Enhancement Research Initiative. Dr. Smith's presentation will focus on Formative Evaluation: Fostering Real-Time Adaptions and Refinements to Improve the Effectiveness of Patient-Centered Medical Home Interventions, an AHRQ Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) Research Methods Brief posted on AHRQ's PCMH Web site. Other webinar participants are Cheryl McDonnell, Ph.D., Director at James Bell Associates and AHRQ's Michael Harrison, Ph.D., Senior Social Scientist. Select to register for the webinar.  

7. AHRQ in the Professional Literature

Fleurence R, Selby JV, Odom-Walker K, Hunt G, Meltzer D, Slutsky JR, et al. How the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute is engaging patients and others in shaping its research agenda. Health Aff 2013 Feb; 32(2):393-400. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Krumholz HM, Lin Z, Keenan PS, Chen J, et al. Relationship between hospital readmission and mortality rates for patients hospitalized with acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, or pneumonia. JAMA 2013 Feb 13; 309(6):587-93. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Walsh JM, Kim SE, Sawaya G, et al. Colorectal cancer screening: what do women from diverse ethnic groups want? J Gen Intern Med 2013 Feb; 28(2):239-46. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Eckstrom E, Feeny DH, Walter LC, et al. Individualizing cancer screening in older adults: a narrative review and framework for future research. J Gen Intern Med 2013 Feb; 28(2):292-8. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Casey K, Hernandez-Boussard T, Mell MW, et al. Differences in readmissions after open repair versus endovascular aneurysm repair. J Vasc Surg 2013 Jan; 57(1):89-95. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Brady PW, Muething S, Kotagal U, et al. Improving situation awareness to reduce unrecognized clinical deterioration and serious safety events. Pediatrics 2013 Jan; 131(1):e299-e308. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Boyd CM, Vollenweider D, Puhan MA. Informing evidence-based decisionmaking for patients with comorbidity: availability of necessary information in clinical trials for chronic diseases. PLoS One 2012 Aug; 7(8):e41601. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Pololi LH, Civian JT, Brennan BT, et al. Experiencing the culture of academic medicine: gender matters, a national study. J Gen Intern Med 2013 Feb; 28(2):201-7. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

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Current as of June 2013
Internet Citation: AHRQ Study Examines Ways to Greatly Reduce Presence of C. diff in Hospital Rooms: Electronic Newsletter, Issue 385. June 2013. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/news/newsletters/e-newsletter/385.html