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Decreasing Ventilator-associated Pneumonia: Getting on Board

Laux, Lori MSN, RN; Herbert, Cheryl CIC, RN


The prevention of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) has been a quality effort that many organizations across the country have undertaken. Through a multidisciplinary approach, the best practices to prevent VAP for our organization were established. Through the interventions of securing the patient resuscitation bag in one location, maintaining the patient's head-of-bed elevation to more than 30° if not contraindicated, Yankauer suction tip care, and the use of chlorhexidine mouth rinse, the incidence of VAP decreased by 43% within a 6-month time frame. Additional ventilator-associated prevention efforts such as sedation and weaning protocols have been established to further enhance preventive efforts.

Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, Pa.

Corresponding author: Lori Laux, MSN, RN, Allegheny General Hospital, 320 East North Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15212 (e-mail:

© 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.