Thursday, July 28, 2011

Impact of Nosocomial infections

Hospital-acquired infections add to functional disability and emotional stress of the patient and may, in some cases, lead to disabling conditions that reduce

the quality of life. Nosocomial infections are also one of the leading causes of death (. The economic costs are considerable. The increased length of stay for infected patients is the greatest contributor to cost. One study showed that the overall increase in the duration of hospitalization for patients with surgical wound infections was 8.2 days, ranging from 3 days for gynaecology to 9.9 for general surgery and 19.8 for orthopaedic surgery. Prolonged stay not only increases direct costs to patients or payers but also indirect costs due to lost work. The increased use of drugs, the need for isolation, and the use of additional laboratory and other diagnostic studies also contribute to costs.

Hospital-acquired infections add to the imbalance between resource allocation for primary and secondary health care by diverting scarce funds to the management of potentially preventable conditions. The advancing age of patients admitted to health

care settings, the greater prevalence of chronic diseases among admitted patients, and the increased use of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures which affect the host defences will provide continuing pressure on nosocomial infections in the future.

Organisms causing nosocomial infections can be transmitted to the community through discharged patients, staff, and visitors. If organisms are multiresistant, they may cause significant disease in the community.

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