Infections after coronary artery bypass graft surgery in Victorian hospitals - VICNISS Hospital Acquired Infection Surveillance

Phillip L. Russo, Ann Bull, Noleen Bennett, Claire Boardman, Simon Burrell, Jane Motley, N. Deborah Friedman, Michael Richards

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To establish a surveillance program reporting surgical site infection rates after coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABGS) in Victorian public hospitals. Methods: The VICNISS Coordinating Centre was established in 2002 to implement and co-ordinate a standardised surveillance system for hospital-acquired infections in acute care Victorian public hospitals. Using validated definitions and methodology from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Nosocomial Infection Surveillance (NNIS) program, data on risk-adjusted surgical site infection (SSI) rates were collected and submitted to the Coordinating Centre for collation and reporting. Results: Six large Melbourne metropolitan hospitals contributed data for CABGS for the period 11 November 2002 to 30 June 2004, comprising a total of 3,482 patient records. Of 3,398 complete records, the aggregate SSI rates per 100 procedures for NNIS risk category 1 and 2 were 4.4 (95% CI 3.7-5.3) and 6.0 (95% CI 4.5-7.8) respectively. The deep sternal SSI rates were 0.6 (95% CI 0.4-1.3) and 0.5 (95% CI 0.5-2.4 for patients in risk category 1 and 2 respectively. The most common pathogen identified was Staphylococcus aureus. Conclusion: This early data from VICNISS demonstrates similar CABGS SSI rates to those reported by NNIS in the USA, but higher than reported by the German Nosocomial Infection Surveillance System. Implications: The adoption of a statewide, co-ordinated surveillance program using validated internationally accepted methodologies allows hospitals to benchmark their infection rates against aggregate local and international data and to examine infection prevention interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-248
Number of pages5
JournalAustralian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2005
Externally publishedYes

Cite this