Incidence of Nosocomial Infections in a Big University Affiliated Hospital in Shiraz, Iran: A Six-month Experience

Mehrdad Askarian, Hilda Mahmoudi, Ojan Assadian


Background: Nosocomial infections (NIs) are one of the most important health issues, particularly in developing countries, because these infections cause high mortality and morbidity, and economic and human resource loss as a consequence. To date, most surveillance studies have been conducted in developed countries, and only a few have been performed in Iran. All of the few Iranian studies have been performed using paper-based collection forms, and none was conducted with the aid of an electronic patient data retrieving and collecting tool. The aim of this study is to determine the incidence of NIs in a big university hospital of Shiraz, with the help of specifically programmed surveillance software merging electronically the available patient data and the infection results input manually.

Methods: The study was conducted prospectively through 6 months from 21st March up to 22nd September 2006, in a 374-bedded educational hospital. All patients admitted during this period were included in the study and examined everyday for detecting four types of NIs: surgical site infection (SSI), urinary tract infection (UTI), pneumonia (PNEU), and blood stream infection (BSI). Centres for Disease Control and Prevention National Nosocomial Infection Surveillance system criteria were applied.

Results: 4013 patients were admitted in the hospital. The overall infection rate was 4.14, and UTI, SSI, BSI, and PNEU rates were 1.82, 1.22, 0.5, and 0.5, respectively, per 1000 patient days of admission.

Conclusions: The results of this study showed that the frequency of NI in the investigated hospital was not higher than in many other reported surveillance results from other countries. This, however, might be a bias as the administration of antibiotics was very high in this study and the quality of microbiological investigation might have influenced significantly, resulting in more false-negative results than expected. Overall, the use of the Iranian National Nosocomial Infection Surveillance System Software proved to be useful and allowed both rapid data collection and detailed data analysis.

Keywords: Iran, National nosocomial infection surveillance, nosocomial infections, surveillance

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