HOW TO DEFEAT SURGICAL SITE INFECTIONS

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The B. Braun SSI Pathway – a holistic framework

Even though the causes of surgical site infections (SSI) are widely known, these infections remain an unsolved problem in the medical world. Mistakes still commonly happen along the treatment pathway – before, during and after surgery. They do however not happen due to a lack of knowledge or care but rather due to the stress and complexity of the OR environment. Which is why we at B. Braun developed the B. Braun SSI Pathway.

The B. Braun SSI Pathway describes 24 evidence-based measures to prevent surgical site infections, for surgeons, operating teams and patients. It can be used both as a practical checklist or an overall framework to help identify relevant working steps and measures, keeping track of compliance and ensuring the highest quality of care.

SSI pathway

The B. Braun SSI pathway

Learn more how we developed it and which guidelines and recommendations it is based on.

Guidelines and recommendations

COVID-19 adapted SSI prevention checklist

How to prevent SSI in times of COVID-19

The authors of the guidance for elective surgery during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic point to the high rate of postoperative mortality among COVID-19 patients (20%). This has resulted in an “urgent need” for investigations into measures that may ensure the safety of both patients and healthcare workers, especially as elective surgery procedures will hopefully soon “restart” at a more normal pace. 

The authors also provide a checklist on hospital precautions for SARS-CoV-2 patients, which are divided into general information, measures to implement before arrival, during arrival (triage system) and during surgery. For the latter, the authors recommend embedding the protective measures to prevent SARS-CoV-2 transmission to surgical patients into the hospital’s strategy of preventing SSI. These measures (the SSI-bundle approach) should be performed as usual, regardless of whether patients have a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 infection. 

Find the summary here or read the full international recommendation.

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Facts about SSI

Facts about SSI

Even in today’s highly sterile operating room, up to ten percent of surgical procedures lead to surgical site infections (SSI) 1. The true rate of surgical site infections is likely to be underestimated 2.

How we developed the B. Braun SSI pathway

How we developed the B. Braun SSI pathway

Here at B. Braun we take Surgical Site Infections (SSI) and the risk they pose to patient safety as well as the burden they impose on health care budgets very serious. In order to help you defeat Surgical Site Infections in your hospital, we developed the B. Braun SSI Pathway – an easy-to-use, ready-to-go framework for the entire surgical team.

At the very foundation of the pathway are guidelines on the prevention of SSI established by the World Health Organization (WHO), the United States’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the German Commission for Hospital Hygiene and Infection Prevention (KRINKO) and the British National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Published between November 2016 and April 2019, they are based on somewhat different methodological approaches but each rely on well-established evidence and best practices. Together with leading experts we took these recommendations and combined them into 24 evidence-based measures along the patient journey that are crucial to preventing SSI.

Following her own experience of SSI within her family, B. Braun expert Susanne Hellmich-Amendt, who played an important part in developing the pathway, concludes: “We have the evidence, we know what to do. Now let’s be the change.”

All it takes is a collective focus and a willingness to make a few small changes to everyday surgical practice. You have to make the next step – we support you with our knowledge and expertise.

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Sources:

  1. Healthcare-associated infections: surgical site infections – ECDC - Annual Epidemiological Report for 2017 https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/publications-data/healthcare-associated-infections-surgical-site-infections-annual-1
  2. Curcio, D., Cane, A., Fernández, F., & Correa, J. (2019). Surgical site infection in elective clean and clean-contaminated surgeries in developing countries. Int J Infect Dis Mar; 80:34-45. doi: 10.1016/j.ijid.2018.12.013
  3. Tanner, J., Padley, W., Assadian, O., Leaper, D., Kiernan, M., & Edmiston, C. (2015). Do surgical care bundles reduce the risk of surgical site infections in patients undergoing colorectal surgery? A systematic review and cohort meta-analysis of 8,515 patients. Surgery, 158(1), 66–77. doi:10.1016/j.surg.2015.03.009
  4. Van der Slegt, J., van der Laan, L., Veen, E. J., Hendriks, Y., Romme, J., & Kluytmans, J. (2013). Implementation of a Bundle of Care to Reduce Surgical Site Infections in Patients Undergoing Vascular Surgery. PLoS ONE, 8(8), e71566. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0071566
  5. Yamamoto, T., Morimoto, T., Kita, R., Masui, H., Kinoshita, H., Sakamoto, Y., … Hosotani, R. (2015). The preventive surgical site infection bundle in patients with colorectal perforation. BMC Surgery, 15(1). doi:10.1186/s12893-015-0115-0
  6. Nachtigall, I., & Bonsignore, M. (2018). Ökonomische Auswirkungen der Hygiene. Krankenhaushygiene Up2date, 13(04), 419–431. doi:10.1055/a-0749-6933