Hospital Sterilization Practices May Not Be Working As Well As intended

Hospital sterilzeSome of the best practices currently in use for the sterilization of hospital rooms may not work as well as intended. A new study finds that more research is needed in order to develop the best guidelines and practices to sterilize hospital rooms and in the process, and in the process, reduce the risk of serious infections.

The study was recently published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.  The researchers reviewed 80 studies dealing with hospital infection control.  They found that many of these studies did not have a patient-centered approach to understanding whether the practices that they recommended worked well to help patients avoid infections. Most interestingly, there is very little data on the effectiveness of the techniques that were suggested or outcomes that benefit patients.

In a majority of the cases studied, the researchers simply compared the bacterial contamination of the surface before and after using the various cleaning techniques. There was no mention about whether the use of the cleaning technique resulted in a lower rate of hospital-acquired infections. Therefore, it’s hard to tell exactly how effective these best practices have been in helping reduce hospital-acquired infections in facilities.

In fact, the researchers actually found that certain cleaning products were completely ineffective in helping reduce the risk of C. difficile infections, one of the more deadly infections in the hospital setting. They are often some of the most difficult-to-prevent hospital infections, and according to another study, only about 6% of 3,000 hospitals studied manage to control the rates of C. difficile  and MRSA infection rates in hospitals.

This research reveals that hospital infection control is an area with which many continue to hospitals struggle. In spite of efforts made to increase hand washing rates and the assumed development of better techniques for the sterilization of hospital rooms, the fact is that many patients acquire an infection during their stay in a hospital.  It is clear that more research needs to be done in order to better understand the impact of room sterilization and the effects on patients.  Until a superior method is developed and proven, Indiana hospital patients face a great risk of acquiring an infection while being treated in local hospitals.

With shorter hospital stays and increased hospitalizations, patient turnover is at an all-time high.  No one never knows who might have occupied the hospital bed in which they now are treated and recuperate.  It is quite possible that the prior occupant suffered from infections that could be lurking under every mattress or pillow.  While hospital personnel follow carefully prescribed procedures for cleaning a room, if the procedure is ineffective, there isn’t any point in pretending that it is making a difference to the safety of the patients they are charged to care for medically.

If you were injured as a result of medical negligence, or acquired an infection in the hospital and want to know whether you have grounds for compensation, speak to a medical malpractice lawyer in Indiana. The Indiana medical malpractice attorneys at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson Kennedy, LLP represent persons injured as a result of medical negligence all across Indiana.  Call today.