The leading cause of death due to health care–associated infections is ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP). The lack of clarity in the definition of VAP has made it difficult to execute and evaluate the effectiveness of prevention strategies. Beginning in 2013, hospitals were expected to implement a new surveillance definition algorithm to identify ventilator-associated events (VAEs). The Institute for Healthcare Improvement recommended the use of the Ventilator Care Bundle as part of an initiative to decrease the incidence of VAP. This article outlines the results of a quality improvement project that was conducted to address this recommendation, improve current staff knowledge, identify gaps in practice, and determine the rate of compliance with prevention strategies. The major findings of this project also exposed limitations of the electronic medical record system, and suggested enhancements, which would promote the VAP Bundle initiatives, facilitate documentation, and permit straightforward data collection.
Surgical Trauma Intensive Care Unit (Dr Munaco) and College of Nursing (Drs Dumas, Edlund, and Munaco), Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston.
Correspondence: Sandra S. Munaco, DNP, APRN, NP-C, CCRN, Medical University of South Carolina, 135 Rutledge Avenue, Charleston, SC 29425 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This project was conducted while the author was enrolled in the Doctor of Nursing Practice program at the College of Nursing, Medical University of South Carolina.
The author does not have any conflicts of interest, legal disclaimers, or financial relationships related to this manuscript.