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Revista de investigación clínica

versión On-line ISSN 2564-8896versión impresa ISSN 0034-8376


OCHOA-HEIN, Eric et al. Surge in Ventilator-Associated Pneumonias and Bloodstream Infections in An Academic Referral Center Converted to Treat COVID-19 Patients. Rev. invest. clín. [online]. 2021, vol.73, n.4, pp.210-215.  Epub 23-Ago-2021. ISSN 2564-8896.


Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) are important adverse events that must be prevented.


The objective of the study was to report and study possible changes in HAI rates as well as their causes after the COVID-19 hospital surge capacity response (HSCR) in an academic referral center.


This was a before-after observational study. The Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) program (prospective surveillance, prevention bundles, antibiotic stewardship, continuing education, and feedback) was transiently disrupted after the start of HSCR (March 2020). HAI rates were compared before (January 2019-February 2020) and after (April-July 2020) HSCR, and plausible predisposing factors in affected patients were compared.


An increase in the HAI rate from 6.2 to 11.8 cases/1000 patient-days was noted between periods due to increases in ventilator-associated pneumonia and bloodstream infection (BSI) rates. More critically ill patients were admitted during HSCR, and use of invasive devices increased. Prone positioning and infusion of muscle relaxants became commonplace. The nurse-to-patient ratio in the intensive care unit decreased, and 4 h shifts were introduced to avoid fatigue. The BSI rate decreased after the IPC program with additional measures was reintroduced in May 2020.


The strain on the workforce and modifications to the IPC program very possibly underlay the findings. IPC programs continue to be essential during the pandemic.

Palabras llave : Healthcare-associated infection; Ventilator-associated pneumonia; Prevention and control; COVID-19.

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