Changing the CLABSI benchmark figure

July 6, 2014 0

The matching Michigan project introduced us to a working towards zero benchmark figure of 1.4 infections per thousand catheter days (Bion et al 2012). However, two years later and the continued emphasis on working towards zero line infections is it now time to offer a new benchmark?

As we are all working towards zero CLABSI a benchmark is useful to demonstrate current practice standards. Moving the benchmark as zero becomes more achievable ensures the momentum for change is maintained.

I appreciate that patient groups, care environments and access to product, policy and education varies across the globe. Therefore, a benchmark may not be useful for all. However, for those closer to the goal of zero I feel that a revised benchmark is important.

A couple of recent publications (Tang et al 2014, Jones et al 2014) have offered results that I feel may illustrate a new benchmark. Interestingly, the new figure is less than half the matching Michigan figure offered in 2012.

Should we make the close to zero CLABSI benchmark figure 0.6 per thousand catheter days?


Bion, J., Richardson, A., Hibbert, P., Beer, J., Abrusci, T., McCutcheon, M., Cassidy, J., Eddleston, J., Gunning, K., Bellingan, G., Patten, M. and Harrison, D. (2012)’Matching Michigan’: a 2-year stepped interventional programme to minimise central venous catheter-blood stream infections in intensive care units in England. BMJ Quality & Safety. Sep 20. [Epub ahead of print].

Tang, H.J., Lin, H.L., Lin, Y.H., Leung, P.O., Chuang, Y.C. and Lai, C.C. (2014) The impact of central line insertion bundle on central line-associated bloodstream infection. BMC Infectious Diseases. 14(1), p.356.

Jones, C.M., Stewart, C. and Roszell, S.S. (2014) Beyond Best Practice: Implementing a Unit-Based CLABSI Project. Journal of Nursing Care Quality. June 27th. [epub ahead of print].