You are here

Study Estimates Costs of Health Care-Associated Infections

Bloodstream infections top the list (September 2)

Total annual costs for five major health care-associated infections (HAIs) were $9.8 billion, with surgical-site infections contributing the most to overall costs, according to a new report in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Researchers reviewed published medical literature for 1986 through April 2013. For estimates of HAI incidence, the authors used the National Healthcare Safety Network of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

According to the results, on a per-case basis, central line-associated bloodstream infections were the most costly HAIs at $45,814, followed by ventilator-associated pneumonia at $40,144, surgical-site infections at $20,785, Clostridium difficile infections at $11,285 and catheter-associated urinary tract infections at $896.

“While quality improvement initiatives have decreased HAI incidence and costs, much more remains to be done. As hospitals realize savings from prevention of these complications under payment reforms, they may be more likely to invest in such strategies,” the study concludes.

Source: JAMA Internal Medicine; September 2, 2013.

Recent Headlines

Despite older, sicker patients, mortality rate fell by a third in 10 years
Study finds fewer than half of trials followed the law
WHO to meet tomorrow to decide on international public heath emergency declaration
Study of posted prices finds wild variations and missing data
Potential contamination could lead to supply chain disruptions
Declining lung cancer mortality helped fuel the progress
Kinase inhibitor targets tumors with a PDGFRA exon 18 mutation
Delayed surgery reduces benefits; premature surgery raises risks
Mortality nearly doubled when patients stopped using their drugs