Title

A Review of the Cost-Effectiveness of Alcohol Disinfection Caps in Clinical Practice

Presenter Information

Emma BensonFollow

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Nursing

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Dr. Jessica Naber; Dr. Warren Edminster

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

The United States of America spends the most on healthcare when compared to other nations of similar income. While the United States spends a lot on healthcare, the health outcomes are not much better compared to other high-income nations, and many families still go into bankruptcy due to medical costs. (Himmelstein, Lawless, Thorne, Fogbey, Woolhandler, 2019) Thus, it is important for American health care facilities to implement cost saving measures while promoting quality care. Infection prevention is an important part of both cost-effective and quality care. This thesis looks at the cost of alcohol caps used in infection prevention in the hospital setting, particularly in prevention of central line-associated infections (CLABSIs).

Hospital-acquired infections cost hospitals thousands of dollars a year, with CLABSIs having the highest cost per case. The recommended practices for preventing CLABSIs include handwashing, bathing the patient with the central line with chlorhexidine, and scrubbing the needleless connectors of the line before accessing. (Center for Disease Control, 2014)With the goal of zero incidence of CLABSIs, several hospitals in the United States have implemented alcohol impregnated caps which attach to the needleless connectors and protect them from microbes. Research has shown that they are effective in disinfection as well as intuitive for providers to use.

This descriptive study looks at four hospitals in the West Kentucky and West Tennessee areas and the use of alcohol caps in infection protocol. This study is designed to evaluate whether the alcohol caps are cost-effective and see if they could be added to “best practice.”

Fall Scholars Week 2019 Event

Honors College Senior Theses

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A Review of the Cost-Effectiveness of Alcohol Disinfection Caps in Clinical Practice

The United States of America spends the most on healthcare when compared to other nations of similar income. While the United States spends a lot on healthcare, the health outcomes are not much better compared to other high-income nations, and many families still go into bankruptcy due to medical costs. (Himmelstein, Lawless, Thorne, Fogbey, Woolhandler, 2019) Thus, it is important for American health care facilities to implement cost saving measures while promoting quality care. Infection prevention is an important part of both cost-effective and quality care. This thesis looks at the cost of alcohol caps used in infection prevention in the hospital setting, particularly in prevention of central line-associated infections (CLABSIs).

Hospital-acquired infections cost hospitals thousands of dollars a year, with CLABSIs having the highest cost per case. The recommended practices for preventing CLABSIs include handwashing, bathing the patient with the central line with chlorhexidine, and scrubbing the needleless connectors of the line before accessing. (Center for Disease Control, 2014)With the goal of zero incidence of CLABSIs, several hospitals in the United States have implemented alcohol impregnated caps which attach to the needleless connectors and protect them from microbes. Research has shown that they are effective in disinfection as well as intuitive for providers to use.

This descriptive study looks at four hospitals in the West Kentucky and West Tennessee areas and the use of alcohol caps in infection protocol. This study is designed to evaluate whether the alcohol caps are cost-effective and see if they could be added to “best practice.”