Addressing the Dressing: Improving Vascular Access Dressing Disruption

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Catheter Related Bloodstream Infections (CRBSI) are a significant cause of hospital morbidity and mortality.  A review of literature and Infusion Therapy Standards indicate that dressing changes due to disruption are associated with a significant risk of bloodstream infection.  A quality improvement project to decrease the number of premature dressing changes due to disruption was initiated and its results will be discussed. 

  • Review the current guidelines and standards regarding vascular access dressing integrity
  • Discuss the evidence indicating the association between dressing disruption and bloodstream infection
  • Describe a successful intervention designed to improve dressing integrity on vascular access devices
Healthcare professionals involved in insertion, use, maintenance and monitoring of vascular catheters and those that face the challenge of preventing bloodstream infections.

Michelle M. DeVries, MPH, CIC 
Senior Infection Control Officer 
Methodist Hospitals, Indiana


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