Toolkit for Reducing Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infections in Hospital Units: Implementation Guide

Appendix I. Catheter Care Pocket Card

Interventions To Prevent CAUTI in Patients Who Have a Documented Medical Need for Indwelling Urinary Catheter

Prevention strategies must focus on clear indications for the insertion of a urinary catheter and prompt removal when no longer necessary.  When an indwelling urinary catheter is indicated, the following interventions should be in place to help prevent infection:

  • Use indwelling catheters only when medically necessary
  • Use aseptic insertion technique with appropriate hand hygiene and gloves
  • Allow only trained health care providers to insert catheter
  • Properly secure catheters to prevent movement and urethral traction
  • Maintain a sterile closed drainage system
  • Maintain good hygiene at the catheter-urethral interface
  • Maintain unobstructed urine flow
  • Maintain drainage bag below level of bladder at all times
  • Remove catheters when no longer needed
  • Do not change indwelling catheters or drainage bags at arbitrary fixed intervals
  • Document indication for urinary catheter on each day of use
  • Use reminder systems to target opportunities to remove catheter
  • Use external (or condom-style) catheters if appropriate in men
  • Use portable ultrasound bladder scans to detect residual urine amounts
  • Consider alternatives to catheters, such as intermittent catheterization and portable ultrasound bladder scans to detect residual urine amounts
Page last reviewed October 2015
Page originally created October 2015
Internet Citation: Appendix I. Catheter Care Pocket Card. Content last reviewed October 2015. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.