Invasive devices such as catheters are the leading causes of infection in healthcare fa­ciliti­es. And there is one type of catheter that is responsible for more healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) in hospitals, long term care and home care than any other device – the indwe­lling urinary catheter. Indewelling catheter is a drainage tube that is inserted int­o the urinary bladder through the urethra is left in place, and it is connected to a closed collection system, e.g., not used for irrigation also called a Foley catheter, does not include straight in-and-out catheters.

 Catheter-associated UTI (CAUTI) can lead to such complications as cystitis, pyelonephritis, gram-negative bacteriemia, prostatitis, epididymitis and orchitis in males and less, com­monly, endocarditis, vertebral osteomye­litis, septic arthritis, endophthalmitis and neningitis in all patients. Complications associated with CAUTI cause discomfort to the patient, prolonged hospital stays by 1 to 3 days, and increased to overall patient cost , especially if bacteriemia occurs and also increased mortality. Each year, more than 13,000 deaths are associated with UTIs.40,41,42


Here are the facts:

More than 1 million cases of CAUTI occur each year in U.S. hospitals and nursing homes and CAUTIs account for up to 40% of HAIs. It is estimated that 25% of patient in the acute care settting will have an indwelling catheter at some point in their hospitalization, and 69% of patients in medical ICUs hospitalized in NNIS hospitals from 1992-1997 had urinary catheters.

Prevention of CAUTI is discussed in the CDC/HICPAC document, Guideline for prevention of Catheter-associaed Urinary Tract Infections.

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