Efficacy of an infection control program in reducing ventilator-associated pneumonia in a Chinese neonatal intensive care unit

Published:September 16, 2013DOI:


      Measures employed in preventing ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) in developing countries are rarely reported. This study evaluates the efficacy of an infection control program in reducing VAP in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) in China.


      All neonates who received mechanical ventilation for at least 48 hours and were hospitalized in the NICU for ≥5 days during 3 epochs were included. The hospital relocated to a new site during phase 2 and a bundle of comprehensive preventive measures against VAP were gradually implemented using the evidence-based practice for improving quality method. Research physicians recorded associated information of patients diagnosed with VAP.


      Of 491 patients receiving mechanical ventilation, 92 (18.7%) developed VAP corresponding to 27.33 per 1,000 ventilator-days. The rate decreased from 48.84 per 1,000 ventilator-days in phase 1 to 25.73 per 1,000 ventilator-days in phase 2 and further diminished to 18.50 per 1,000 ventilator-days in phase 3 (P < .001). Overall mortality rate of admitted neonates significantly decreased from 14.0% in phase 1 to 2.9% in phase 2 and 2.7% in phase 3 (P = .000). Gram-negative bacteria (95.5%) were the predominant organisms in VAP and Acinetobacter baumannii (65.2%) was the most frequently isolated microorganism.


      Implementing a multifaceted infection control program resulted in a significant reduction in VAP rate with long-term effects. Such interventions could be extended to other low-income countries.

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