Johns Hopkins reduces pediatric bloodstream infections by 20% in oncology

Jonhs Hopkins Medical Center was able to reduce the number of central-line bloodstream infections in pediatric cancer patients by 20% over two years by following a set of basic precautions, by encouraging families to speak up when they observe noncompliance with the protocol and by honest analysis of the root cause behind every single infection, according to a Johns Hopkins press release.

According to the press release, the protocol included frequent and regular changing of the dressing covering the central line; regular changing of the tubes and caps attached to central line; cleaning of the line before and after each use; use of facial mask and gloves when handling the device; and hand-washing before and after handling the line.  The medical center then educated parents about these protocols, and asked them to watch and speak up if anything was being done differently.   

When there was an infection, oncology nurses also held monthly briefings to discuss every infection that occurred during the study.  

(Sources: Johns Hopkins press release,, September 3, 2012; Pediatrics,, September 2012; The Advisory Board Daily Briefing,, September 10, 2012)