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Hospitals underestimate number of staff needed to prevent infections

Study suggests new benchmark of having one employee per 69 beds but also urges need for local assessment

Hospitals may be underestimating the number of specialist staff they need to prevent infections among patients, and should consider having one employee per 69 beds, a study suggests

Hospitals may be underestimating the number of specialist staff they use to prevent infections among patients, a study suggests.

A team of researchers in the US evaluated a non-profit healthcare system involving 34 hospitals and 600 clinics across five states.

Prior to a previous study in 2002 the level of recommended infection prevention control staffing had been set at one full time equivalent employee for every 250 acute care beds, which was subsequently changed to 0.8-1.0 for every 100 occupied acute care beds.

In the new study researchers spent a day at each site observing and interviewing staff.

New benchmark recommended

Type of activity, frequency, hours per activity


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