Eliminating HAI by Stopping Germs at the Door
I know I've said I don't like EBOS
(evidence-based order sets), because I don't believe that a single treatment should be used on every patient with the same diagnosis. Now having said that, I don't mean to imply that I am against the research that brings us to EBOS conclusions. I realize how important medical research is. I wonder though, if the millions of dollars designated for research are being used in the most effective way.
Let's face it, there's some pretty silly research being done. I remember a few years ago, reading a journal that described a several million dollar grant to study the effect of chocolate and salty snacks on pre-menstrual women. Seriously? Yes seriously. Listen, for $100.00 I could have told them everything they needed to know. For good measure I would have offered up the 3-11 staff in the ER as the control group.
As recently as 2 weeks ago, I read a research study that verified doubling up on Tamiflu for severe flu symptoms didn't help improve the outcome or length of illness. Duh. Didn't we know that already without a study? We tell patients all the time more isn't necessarily better with prescriptions.
But here is my all time favorite study. Someone FINALLY listened to me. I have been saying for YEARS that the passageway between the set of double doors to the ER should be like a carwash; the patient on the stretcher should be placed in the center, and then sprayed with soap, water and chlorhexidine, then rinsed, dried, gowned, and only then placed in a exam room. Hospitals aren't clean anymore because the "people we serve" are bringing all sorts of germs in! If we decontaminate them, HAIs will dramatically decrease. And again...Duh!