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We wrap up the first half of 2018 with a plethora of noteworthy infection prevention and control news. In this issue of the ICCS Infection Prevention & Control Newsletter, highlights include stories on surgery center colonoscopy infection rates, infection prevention gaps at critical access hospitals, a proposed federal rule on hospital infection reporting, influenza vaccine requirements, outpatient antibiotic use and more.

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ASC Infection Rates Following Colonoscopy and Endoscopy Higher Than Believed — Rates of infection following colonoscopies and upper-GI endoscopies performed at ambulatory surgery centers is much higher than previously expected, according to a study.
Improperly Cleaned Surgical Instruments Puts CA Hospital Into Immediate Jeopardy — A California hospital was assigned "immediate jeopardy" after state health officials discovered improper surgical instrument cleaning processes. As ICCS President Phenelle Segal notes, despite the ongoing efforts of infection prevention professionals to promote "best practices," suboptimal practices within the reprocessing of medical devices and instruments continue to plague facilities across the nation.
New Study Identifies Gaps in Infection Prevention and Control at Critical Access Hospitals — Critical access hospitals face significant challenges in their infection prevention and control practices, according to new research.
Trump Administration Rule Could Stop Public Reporting of Hospital Infections Despite Death Toll — Federal health regulators will have to stop releasing data on hospital infections — which affect one in 25 hospital patients every day — under a proposal set to take effect in November, according to an analysis by patient safety advocates. 
Mistakes Causing Self-Contamination Common in Hospitals — Failures to don personal protective equipment and adhere to routine precautions to prevent transmission of infectious agents are common in hospitals and are a source of potential self-contamination, a study suggests.
Nursing Attitude Toward Infection Control Affects Compliance — A correlation exists between home healthcare nurses' attitudes toward infection control and compliance rates, according to a study.
Hospitals Increasingly Requiring Influenza Vaccine for Staff — There is a significant surge in the number of hospitals requiring healthcare personnel to receive influenza vaccines, according to a study.
Outpatient Antibiotic Use and the Need for Increased Antibiotic Stewardship Efforts — Analysis of antibiotic prescribing trends reveals a continued need to improve prescribing practices in outpatient settings in the United States.
Screening for Clostridium difficile at Admission Reduces Outbreak Risk in the Surgical Unit — A ward-based isolate and screening strategy for Clostridium difficile, consisting of perirectal swabbing and analysis by polymerase chain reaction for toxin B gene at admission to the surgical care unit, can successfully identify asymptomatic patients at risk progression to symptomatic C. difficile, according to a study.
Hospital-Acquired Conditions Decline 8%, Saving Thousands of Lives — From 2014 to 2016, rates of hospital-acquired conditions fell by 8% percent. This decline translated to saving about 8,000 lives and $2.9 billion in healthcare costs.
Parent Cleansing Paramount Prior to Skin-to-Skin Care — Neonatal intensive care units increasingly encourage meaningful touch and skin-to-skin care between parents and premature babies to aid the babies' development. But a hospital practicing skin-to-skin care noticed an unwanted side effect: a spike in Staphylococcus aureus infections among newborns.

Clostridium Difficile Infections Decline 36% in Canadian Hospitals — Clostridium difficileinfections rates decreased about 36% in Canadian hospitals from 2009–2015, according to a study.


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