CAUTI surveillance and intervention

Catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI) are the most common of all healthcare-associated infections at around 15% of total infections. They are linked to increased morbidity and mortality, higher healthcare costs and longer hospital stays. Epidemiological monitoring is central to the successful prevention and control of these infections, which is why Swissnoso has developed a CAUTI surveillance module within the NOSO strategy.

Approximately every fifth person receives a urinary catheter while in hospital and is therefore at risk of contracting a CAUTI. Prevention measures are based on regular CAUTI surveillance. Patient Safety Switzerland conducted a pilot programme “progress! Urinary catheter safety” with Swissnoso from 2015 to 2018. This pilot included surveillance of urinary catheterisations. Swissnoso developed the “CAUTI Surveillance” module based on the results of the programme. Together with the “SSI Surveillance” module, it forms the second component of the HAI national monitoring system, a key measure of the NOSO strategy.

A national module has enabled CAUTI surveillance since 2022

Since January 2022, the “CAUTI Surveillance” module has been available to all Swiss acute-care hospitals. Participation in the module is voluntary for hospitals and free of charge during the first rollout phase up to the end of 2024. In 2022, 20 hospitals adopted the module. The data gathered from about 156,000 patients contained 176 symptomatic CAUTI diagnoses in total, working out at 0.02 infections per 100 patient days. Swissnoso has published the results in a report.

Swissnoso developed the “CAUTI Intervention” module with financial support from the FOPH to prevent CAUTI. It has been available since January 2023, in addition to the “CAUTI Surveillance” module. The two modules complement each other and provide hospitals with a comprehensive and effective CAUTI prevention system.

Last modification 23.11.2023

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Federal Office of Public Health FOPH
Division of Communicable Diseases
Infection Control and Vaccination Programme Section
Schwarzenburgstrasse 157
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