According to information from a new study released in the New England Journal of Medicine, about one out of every 25 people seeking treatment at hospitals in 2011 contracted some sort of infection during their stay. The total amount of hospital infections that year was 721,800. Of those, nearly 75,000 individuals died, but it’s important to note that the study does not indicate how many of those deaths were directly related to the infections.
The study looked at data from 183 hospitals across the country, and 11,282 patients staying at those hospitals. It took place between May and September 2011.
The most common types of infections at hospital were surgical site infections and pneumonia, each of which made up about 22 percent of all infections found in the study. Gastrointestinal infections, urinary tract infections and bloodstream infections were also commonplace.
While these numbers do represent some progress from past statistics, it is clear that there are still far too many patients contracting infections while in the hospital. It is up to hospitals to put certain standards and practices in place to curb the risk of infection to patients in for hospital stays.
It’s clear that there are definitely ways that hospitals can prevent these infections from occurring. For example, in 2008, the CDC began requiring hospitals to implement a checklist of best practices for inserting central lines in veins in the chest. As a result, bloodstream infections dropped by 44 percent between 2008 and 2012.
If you or a loved one suffered an infection while in your hospital and believe it was due to negligence on the part of a medical professional or other staff member, speak with an Atlanta personal injury lawyer at McMenamy Law, LLC right away.