A world without surgery-related infections

A new 16-page guide, sponsored by Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies, provides fascinating insight into surgery-related infections and antibiotic resistance.

Published by The Clinical Services Journal, the exclusive guide, 'Through the Looking Glass: A World Without Surgery-related Infections', provides expert analysis from four leading experts in the field.

Professor David Leaper MB ChB(Hons), past president of the Surgical Infection Society of Europe and the European Wound Management Association warns that urgent steps need to be taken in a bid to tackle the challenge of antibiotic resistance and that antibiotic stewardship is crucial. He comments: "If this message was pushed hard it would help, but not many hospitals have surgical site infection champions. Having a surgical site infection champion works, but it is also a multidisciplinary team effort - nurses, anaesthetists, surgeons, microbiologists, infection prevention and control all need to be part of this."

Surgical site infections account for 16% of healthcare-associated infections and are associated with considerable morbidity, mortality and increased costs of care. Against this backdrop, Dawn Stott, CEO of the Association for Perioperative Practice (AfPP) shares her vision on enhancing the quality of care and patient safety in the NHS, and the independent sector throughout the UK. "Delivering improvement is all about raising awareness, with perioperative practitioners and surgeons," she observes. "It is about team work, collaboration, sharing knowledge and best practice."

Ron Daniels, chief executive of the Global Sepsis Alliance and has lobbies the Government over several years, culminating in the announcement by the UK Secretary of State in 2015 of a resourced suite of measures to transform sepsis care across the UK. In 'Through the Looking Glass: A World Without Surgery-related Infections', Ron calls for improvement in the prevention, detection and effective treatment of infection following surgery. "We need to make sure we employ surgical site infection prevention care bundles robustly with 100% reliability, to ensure we minimise the very real risk of post-operative infection," he asserts. "This should include the use of clippers to remove hair, chlorhexidine-based skin prepration, as well as ensuring a sterile environment."

The Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has adopted a zero-tolerance approach to infections and has received widespread recognition for its consistent efforts in reducing surgery-related infections. Professor Mike Reed, the Trust's consultant trauma and orthopedic surgeon, shares his story and explains how approaches such as this can help prevent surgery-related infections. "The Trust now checks every patient for diabetes and we are finding cases that we didn't previously know about," states Prof Reed. "This is a key area that can be addressed to improve surgical site infection prevention, along with the optimisation of medicines. We believe that some drugs increase the risk of infection, such as rheumatoid arthritis drugs, so reducing or ceasing these for a period, prior to surgery, can help reduce the incidence."

The guide concludes with a call to action from Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Company. The company asserts that to truly achieve a world without surgery-related infection, we must think BIG: "Our collective 'future of surgery' mindset should consider all surgery-related infections as 'preventable' right across the continuum of care."

'Through the Looking Glass: A World Without Surgery-related Infections' is now available for download from http://content.yudu.com/web/1u0jl/0A1up6l/CSJTtLG/index.html