Reducing blood culture contamination in the emergency department: an interrupted time series quality improvement study

Self WH, Speroff T, Grijalva CG, McNaughton CD, Ashburn J, Liu D, Arbogast PG, Russ S, Storrow AB, Talbot TR.
Acad Emerg Med. 2013 Jan;20(1):89-97.
Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN

  • The study objective was to develop and evaluate the effectiveness of a quality improvement (QI) intervention for reducing blood culture contamination in an ED.
  • The QI intervention involved changing the technique of blood culture specimen collection from the traditional clean procedure, to a new sterile procedure, with standardized use of sterile gloves and a new materials kit containing a 2% CHG skin antisepsis device, a sterile fenestrated drape, a sterile needle, and a procedural checklist.
  • During the baseline period, (4.3%) cultures were contaminated, compared to (1.7%) during the intervention period.

Full text