Vascular Access–Related Bloodstream Infections in Hemodialysis Patients, Québec, Surveillance Results 2012–2013

From April 1, 2012, to March 31, 2013, 42 hemodialysis units took part in the surveillance of vascular access–related bloodstream infections (VARBSIs) in hemodialysis (HD) patients, for a combined total of 51,697 patient periods. The participating units reported 218 VARBSIs in 209 patients. Patient periods involving a fistula accounted for 44.9% of cases. The VARBSI incidence rate was 0.19 cases per 100 patient periods for patients with an arteriovenous (AV) fistula, 0.26 for patients with a synthetic fistula (graft), 0.55 for patients with a permanent catheter and 5.06 for patients with a temporary catheter. Incidence rates in 2012–2013 by type of vascular access were stable compared to 2008–2012 despite an increasing proportion of catheter use. The incidence rates for patients with a catheter of either type decreased significantly. The program has been compulsory since 2011–2012, which means the number of participating units has remained unchanged since then.

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