Best Practices: Commitment to Quality
Cottage Health is committed to improving the health of our community and closely monitors quality data to develop continuous improvement initiatives.
In 2014, we introduced new robotic technology as an additional measure to disinfect patient rooms. Xenex robots emit intense ultraviolet light to kill bacteria. The technology is 20 times more effective than standard chemical cleaning.
Dr. David Fisk, medical director for Cottage Health’s infection control program, heads an antibiotic stewardship program that serves our entire community. Its goal is to reduce unnecessary use of antibiotics, which can lead to increased numbers of antibiotic-resistant infections.
Sepsis is a severe, potentially life-threatening illness caused by overwhelming infection. Blood clotting and low blood pressure during sepsis reduces blood flow to limbs and vital organs, and can lead to organ failure or gangrene (damage to tissues). The most serious types of sepsis are severe sepsis and septic shock.
Early diagnosis and treatment of sepsis significantly improves patient outcomes. At Cottage Health, a "Slay Sepsis Protocol" was first implemented in 2005. It has been continually refined and continues to be a leader in successful sepsis treatment.
Components of the "Slay Sepsis Protocol"
- Early identification of patients likely to have sepsis, lab and X-ray tests to make the diagnosis of sepsis and its likely source.
- Initiating rapid fluid resuscitation.
- Rapid administration of antibiotics after blood cultures are drawn.
- Alerting the Sepsis Team to continue the six-hour resuscitation efforts and further manage patients in the Intensive Care Unit.
Other Measures We Use to Prevent Infection
- Diligent handwashing practice for caregivers, and education for patient visitors.
- Screening pre-surgical patients for potential Staph bacteria.
- Appropriate use of antibiotics pre- and post-surgery.