Cases of infections that Americans usually develop during their stay in hospitals are dropping each year, especially over the past decade. This is in reference to a report released on Wednesday by the federal health officials which indicates that hospitals have improved their practices and nursing home’s roles in medical care have advanced.
According to federal health officials, there were about 722,000 hospital infections in 2011, which is a drop compared to past estimates of 1.7 million annually. At 2011 rate, it means one in every 25 patients got an infection during stay at the hospital, contrary to one in every 20 previously.
Officials insisted that past estimates, made public in 2007 using data from 2002, was less accurate.
The new findings were the result of the first nationally representative count of cases of hospital infections. In the new survey, which the officials used data from several years ago to come up with more accurate information, reviewers randomly selected over 10,000 patients from 183 hospitals, enough for a broad sample.
According to health officials, the new estimate, though not precisely comparable, gave an insight in the course of hospital infections, which accounts for thousands of deaths annually.
In reference to the new data published in The New England Journal o of Medicine on Wednesday March 26, around 75,000 patients who got hospital infections in 2011 died a rate comparable to one in every nine people with infections.
Dr. Michael Bell, deputy director of the division of health care quality promotion at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said that there seems to be a trend towards improvement, in a report.
Noticing that improvements at hospitals played important roles in the drop, Dr. Bell also said other forces were at work including changes in the country’s medical landscape. Majority of operations are carried out of hospitals, in outpatient amenities such as orthopedic surgery centers, and much care practices in hospitals are transferring to nursing homes.
Dr. Bell said that medical systems continue to change at a steady pace.
He reckons that this could account for the decrease in infections – and hospitals are part of the report – adding that health officials were working to expand their data collection to take account of nursing homes and outpatient facilities.