Health Care-Associated or Hospital-Acquired Infections are critical bacterial, fungal, or viral infections that patients acquire within 48 or more after hospital admission or within 30 hours after receiving healthcare (Haque et al., 2018). Hospital-Acquired Infections (HAIs) are continually becoming a serious global health issue (Sahiledengle et al,, 2020). Healthcare facilities are constantly seeking measures to mitigate factors that contribute to HAIs. The article by Despotovic et al. (2020) explores the acquisition of HAIs in Intensive Care Units (ICUs) and how the exposure to such infections predisposes patients in the hospital to increased mortality rates and other health-threatening conditions such as higher morbidity levels. The study looked into the antimicrobial-resistant patterns of patients who contacted HAIs and mortality rates of the patients. The research focused on adult patients in ICUs in a healthcare facility in Serbia.
Variables and Hypothesis
The variables in the study are the rates of HAIs in adult ICUs and the determinants (causes or risk factors) of the health-related states, including diseases in a specified population (school, city, country, neighborhood, or global). The rates of HAIs, the causes, and the antimicrobial resistance patterns constitute the dependent variables. The population is the independent variable. The dependent variables correlate with one another. The research question that the study aimed to establish was, “What is the HAIs’ epidemiology in the ICU…and what could be the factors or causes to both acquisition of the infections and increased patient mortality rates from HAIs?”
The sample size of the population in the study constituted 355 patients. In the population, there were190 were males, constituting 53.5 percent. 165 were females, making up to 46.5 of the group (Despotovi et al., 2020). They were all elderly with a mean age of 63.1 percent. The target population were adults (elderly) in a Serbian university health facility’s ICU. The focused setting of the 2-year retrospective research was a 15-bed ICU within a 150-bed capacity University Teaching Hospital in Serbia’s clinical center (Despotovic et al., 2020). The ethical considerations included observation of patient’s safety and privacy. The sample population participated under informed consent. The researchers performed no scientific or medical experimentation on the patients; they only observed and documented the population’s progress.
Researches extracted clinical characteristics such as primary diagnosis, comorbidities, antimicrobial use, risk factors, and demographic information such as gender and age from patient medical records. They documented every HAI using the ECDC standard criteria for documentation. The results reported that 116 patients contacted at least 1 HAI within the study period, which reports an incidence rate of 32.7 percent. Principal HAIs included UTI (Urinary Tract Infection) (74 episodes – 36.3 percent), Bloodstream Infections (40 episodes – 19.6 percent) (Despotovic et al., 2020). Researchers used the SPSS software to analyze quantitative data.
Summary, Significance, and Recommendations
The study indicated that the ICU had high rates of HAIs, a finding that mirrors what might be a reality in other ICUs across the world. The rates of antimicrobial resistance and the MDR proportion are much higher in Serbia than in other European countries. The study is significant to healthcare because it highlights the HAIs and antibacterial resistant rates in Serbia and compares it to findings from other nations. For instance, it opens doors for new research, for instance, comparing the environmental factors and healthcare standards between countries to establish extended causatives of HAIs. Nurses should assess the HAIs’ risk factors and mortality of patients due to HAIs identified in the research to set and formulate new policies as the article suggests. The article recommends extensive multicentric studies to investigate the reality behind HAIs and the burden it generates.
Despotovic, A., Milosevic, B., Milosevic, I., Mitrovic, N., Cirkovic, A., Jovanovic, S., & Stevanovic, G. (2020). Hospital-acquired infections in the adult intensive care unit—Epidemiology, antimicrobial resistance patterns, and risk factors for acquisition and mortality. American journal of infection control, 48(10), 1211-1215. Web.
Haque, M., Sartelli, M., McKimm, J., & Bakar, M. A. (2018). Health care-associated infections–an overview. Infection and drug resistance, 11, 2321. Web.
Sahiledengle, B., Seyoum, F., Abebe, D., Geleta, E. N., Negash, G., Kalu, A., & Quisido, B. J. E. (2020). Incidence and risk factors for hospital-acquired infection among paediatric patients in a teaching hospital: a prospective study in southeast Ethiopia. BMJ open, 10(12), e037997. Web.