ASN and CDC’s “Nephrologists Transforming Dialysis Safety” Team Up with Human Factors Engineers to Target Zero Infections in Hemodialysis

  • 1 Alan S. Kliger, MD, is clinical professor of medicine, Yale School of Medicine, and chair, project committee, Nephrologists Transforming Dialysis Safety. Sarah Henrickson Parker, PhD, is senior director, Center for Simulation, Research and Patient Safety, Carilion Clinic; assistant professor, department of biomedical science, Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine; and assistant professor of research, Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at Virginia Tech Carilion and department of psychology, Virginia Tech.
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Each year in the United States, more than 8000 hemodialysis patients die after experiencing sepsis or other serious infectious complications. Of those patients, the highest percentage have infections related to a central venous catheter. Other vascular access sites can also become infected and cause sepsis.

Infections caused by multidrug-resistant organisms are far more common in the dialysis population than in the general population and have a high rate of mortality. Influenza is common and can be deadly in patients receiving dialysis. It has recently been estimated that more than 1000 dialysis patients in the United States die annually of influenza-like

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