Hospital-acquired Pneumonia Prevention

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In this day and age, the general population assumes that when someone is hospitalized the risk for getting a new infection while in the hospital is minimal. However, in the United States the risk for gaining a hospital-associated infection has become a serious concern and a costly one at that. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that hospital-associated infections have cost an estimate of 35.7 to 45 billion dollars to United States hospital when 20% of these infections could have been preventable with the correct interventions. One of the most common hospital-associated infections has become hospital-acquired pneumonia. (Scott II, 2009) This type of pneumonia is easily preventable if healthcare workers would comply with a few simple interventions that should already be in place in their facility. While these interventions have been proven effective, full compliance is still lacking and in the end it is being left to up the health care staff to become aware of the results.

Nursing Process

Pneumonia is an inflammatory response that results in an excess amount of fluid in the interstitial spaces, the alveoli, and the bronchioles. It is caused by the inhalation of organisms or irritants that move into the alveoli when the immune system is not strong enough to combat it. Once these organisms or irritants enter the lungs, they reach the alveoli where they begin to multiply. This multiplication of these organisms results in white blood cells traveling into the area subsequently causing local capillaries to become edematous, leaky, and to create exudate. The combination of this results in thickening of the alveolar wall due to fluid collection within and around the alveoli. Impaired gas exchange, which is the ...

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... Elsevier Saunders

Kleinpell RM, Munro CL, Giuliano KK. Targeting Health Care–Associated Infections: Evidence-Based Strategies. In: Hughes RG, editor. Patient Safety and Quality: An Evidence-Based Handbook for Nurses. Rockville (MD): Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US); 2008 Apr. Chapter 42. Available from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK2632/

Scott II, R. (2009) The direct medical costs of healthcare-associated infections in U. S. hospitals and the benefits of prevention. Center of Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/HAI/pdfs/hai/Scott_CostPaper.pdf

Waltman, P. A., Schenk, L. K., Martin, T. M., & Walker, J. (2011). Effects of Student Participation in Hand Hygiene Monitoring on Knowledge and Perception of Infection Control Practices. Journal Of Nursing Education, 50(4), 216-221. doi:10.3928/01484834-20110228-06
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