AHRQ Safety Program for Intensive Care Units: Preventing CLABSI and CAUTI

CUSP LogoThe purpose of this project is to reduce the rate of central line-associated blood stream infections (CLABSI) and catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI) in hospital intensive care units (ICUs) with elevated rates of these infections. Two previous AHRQ-funded national projects that utilized the Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program (CUSP) model resulted in significant improvements in rates of CLABSI and CAUTI. However, reducing these infections remains a challenge for some ICUs. This project expands what was learned in the previous AHRQ-funded projects, tailors the approach to ICUs with persistently elevated rates of CLABSI and CAUTI, and brings the best available knowledge to help frontline staff in ICUs reduce these infections.



A toolkit is being developed and tested based on the experiences of participants. To speed the availability of resources to frontline clinicians, AHRQ is releasing some elements of the toolkit early. These early-release elements are below.


In this series of podcasts, senior leaders from the field are interviewed about their efforts to reduce CLABSI and CAUTI. These leaders discuss leadership strategies and approaches, what worked in their facility, and possible pitfalls.  The intended audience is ICU senior leaders and hospital executives.  Each podcast is 11-14 minutes. 

      Podcast 1: Why Senior Leadership Engagement Matters (mp3, 11.3 MB)
      Podcast 1 Transcript (Word File, 285 KB)
      Podcast 2: What Does It Mean to Be Engaged? (mp3, 12.8 MB)
      Podcast 2 Transcript (Word File, 283 KB)
      Podcast 3: Implementing Strategies and Tools (mp3, 14 MB)
      Podcast 3 Transcript (Word File, 287 KB)

Project Partners

AHRQ is funding this implementation project, and is coordinating with other Federal agency partners. The Health Research & Educational Trust of the American Hospital Association is contracted by AHRQ to lead the conduct of this project with these project partners:

  • American Nurses Association
  • Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology
  • HealthInsight Quality Improvement Network
  • Michigan Health & Hospital Association Keystone Center
  • Society of Critical Care Medicine
  • Society of Hospital Medicine
  • University of Michigan
Page last reviewed June 2017
Page originally created June 2017
Internet Citation: AHRQ Safety Program for Intensive Care Units: Preventing CLABSI and CAUTI. Content last reviewed June 2017. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. https://www.ahrq.gov/professionals/quality-patient-safety/hais/tools/preventing/index.html
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