JCO Oncol Pract 2020 03 8;16(3):e306-e312. Epub 2020 Jan 8.
University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, VA.
Purpose: Mucosal barrier injury (MBI) occurs during periods of prolonged neutropenia in patients receiving cytotoxic chemotherapy for hematologic malignancies. This can lead to laboratory-confirmed bloodstream infections (LCBIs) and subsequent complications, including sepsis, organ failure, and possible death. There are no published prevention strategies for MBI. The purpose of our proposal was to decrease our MBI-LCBI events per month by 25%.
Methods: A multidisciplinary team was assembled to achieve this proposal. Cause-and-effect diagrams in addition to Pareto charts were used to investigate potential interventions. Using Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycles, multiple tests of change were designed over the course of 3 years.
Results: The number of baseline events per month for MBI-LCBIs was 1.1. With the completion of the first PDSA cycle, the MBI-LCBI events dropped to 1.0 event per month. A second PDSA cycle involving implementation of an oral care kit improved to 0.35 events per month. This unfortunately was not sustained, and a root cause analysis demonstrated that physician noncompliance with ordering the oral kit was the main reason. After the change of a physician-driven protocol to a nurse-driven protocol, the third PDSA cycle resulted in a decrease in MBI-LCBI events to 0.89 events per month.
Conclusion: To our knowledge, this is the first published report of an intervention to prevent MBI-LCBI events. Through a multidisciplinary approach and with quality improvement tools, we were able to demonstrate a significant reduction in MBI-LCBI events.