UW Hospital Gets the BUGG: TLC Participates in Infection Prevention Study

Madison, Wisconsin - University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics is one of 20 academic medical centers nationwide participating in a study to determine if using gowns and gloves by health care workers for all patient care in the Trauma and Life Support Center (TLC) reduces health care-acquired infections.


The $5.7 million study, called the Benefits of Universal Gown and Gloving (BUGG), is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality and the Joint Commission.


"The University of Wisconsin has been a leader in hospital infection control research for more than two decades, thanks to the work of Professor Emeritus Dr. Dennis Maki," said Dr. Nasia Safdar, UW Hospital and Clinics epidemiologist. "Because of Maki's leadership in infection control research, it makes sense for UW Hospital and Clinics to be part of a study that will change clinical care, regardless of the study outcome."


The study will compare 10 hospital ICUs that use gowns and gloves for all patients with 10 hospitals using current CDC guidelines for prevention of MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) and VRE (vancomycin-resistant enterococci). The CDC currently recommends gloves and gowns when health care workers come in contact with a patient who has already been diagnosed with MRSA or VRE infections.


UW Hospital and Clinics has been selected as one of 10 hospitals to require gloves and gowns for all health care workers and visitors in the TLC. The study began in early January and will continue through September.


"Participation in the study required a real team approach and involves many people and departments including the nursing and medical staff, quality and safety, purchasing, materials management and distribution and infection control," said Safdar. 


Safdar said UW Health is also developing related research proposals on how universal gloving and gowning in the TLC may change the behavior of caregivers as well as patient families and visitors.


"As the CDC has said, health care-acquired infections are a fact of life for all hospitals and health care facilities across the country," said Sue Sanford-Ring, vice president of quality and safety at UW Hospital and Clinics. "We're pleased to partner with the CDC to find solutions and ways to make meaningful changes for the sake of all our patients and health care professionals." 


The CDC reports that there are an estimated 1.7 million health care-associated infections and 99,000 d associated deaths each year. Both Safdar and Dr. Carolyn Clancy, the director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality at the CDC, expect that the study's findings will result in improvements in the American health care system.

Date Published: 03/23/2012

News tag(s):  nasia safdar

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