June 5, 2019
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In the News
Placards Do Not Improve Hand Hygiene Adherence
Hand hygiene placards posted in a Denver hospital — including one that featured an image of two eyes looking directly at the viewer with a reminder to clean their hands — did not result in measurable improvements in hand hygiene adherence among health care workers, researchers reported. “Hospitals around the country are struggling to address hand hygiene adherence, but there are no nationally adopted standards for hand hygiene measurement and improvement, and an optimal combination of elements in hand hygiene ‘bundles’ remains unclear,” Sarah A. Stella, MD, associate professor of medicine and hospital medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, told Infectious Disease News. “Infection preventionists often utilize visual cues and reminders in an attempt to influence behavior without evidence that they are effective.”

In-Hospital Delirium Increases Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction Risk in Older
New research indicates that older patients who develop delirium— an acute attentional deficit that waxes and wanes —right after surgery are more likely to show signs of postoperative cognitive dysfunction one month later. But the study, published in the Online First edition of Anesthesiology, the peer-reviewed medical journal of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA), also found that the number of patients still showing signs of postoperative cognitive dysfunction decreased steadily and significantly at two and six months after surgery. Delirium is a common postoperative complication in older surgical patients and has been associated with cognitive decline, increased risk of dementia, and a host of other negative outcomes. Additionally, delayed or incomplete cognitive recovery can complicate recuperation for older surgical patients.
Intelligent ICU for Autonomous Patient Monitoring Using Pervasive Sensing and Deep Learning
Currently, many critical care indices are not captured automatically at a granular level, rather are repetitively assessed by overburdened nurses. In this pilot study, we examined the feasibility of using pervasive sensing technology and artificial intelligence for autonomous and granular monitoring in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). As an exemplary prevalent condition, we characterized delirious patients and their environment. We used wearable sensors, light and sound sensors, and a camera to collect data on patients and their environment. We analyzed collected data to detect and recognize patient’s face, their postures, facial action units and expressions, head pose variation, extremity movements, sound pressure levels, light intensity level, and visitation frequency.

Long-Term Mortality Risk Highest Among Young Patients After ICU Discharge
Although aging was associated with an increased risk for mortality in the 3 years following hospital ICU discharge, long-term mortality was highest among young patients after standardizing for age and sex, according to a study published in JAMA Network Open. “The benefit of ICU admission for elderly patients has been questioned because it may lead to unnecessary invasive care and avoidable health care expenditure,” Alice Atramont, MD, MSc, of Caisse Nationale d’Assurance Maladie (CNAM) in Paris, France, and colleagues wrote. “In France, the number of ICU beds per 100,000 population is at the European mean, with no financial barriers to access ICU care because of a national health insurance system offering universal coverage for the French population. However, there are few wide-scale population-based studies that document short-term and long-term outcomes of adult patients after ICU discharge across all age strata.

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