We have been particularly interested in this hospital -wide since
decentralizing phlebotomy a few years ago. According to our pathology
folks, the benchmark is under 3%, although I've had difficulty finding the
references for that number. We are a general ED, although we see about
15000 kids each year since we have a pedi residency and inpatient unit.
Although the numbers bump up and down, the ED rate after pretty intensive QA
work remains at about 4-6%, and the pedi rate in the ED (which we track
separately) runs a little higher. We currently have limited the number of
staff who are to draw blood (we actually use the non-licensed tech staff
rather than nurses, although the pedi draws are diluted (polluted?) with
resident draws since they do most of the sepsis work-ups in infants.
Although we're not at benchmark, we have had significant improvement by
using the expert team concept, and we do discourage draws from IV starts,
although I know they continue to happen.
Michael Werdmann, M.D., FACEP
Chairman, Dept. of Emergency Medicine
Bridgeport, CT. 06610
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> -----Original Message-----
> From: [log in to unmask] [SMTP:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Thursday, March 09, 2000 2:34 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: contaminated blood cultures
> To All:
> Does anyone have any data on the contamination incidence of blood cultures
> drawn in your ED?
> Are people routinely doing a seperate stick exclusively for obtaining
> It seems every now and again we get a sudden upserge in contamination. It
> usually coincides with a bump in volume.
> I wellcome any comments.
> Elliott Friedman, M.D.
> Queens, NY
> For more information, send mail to [log in to unmask] with the
> message: info PED-EM-L
> The URL for the PED-EM-L Web Page is:
For more information, send mail to [log in to unmask] with the message: info PED-EM-L
The URL for the PED-EM-L Web Page is: