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Incidence and Characteristics of Ventilator-Associated Events Reported to the National Healthcare Safety Network in 2014*
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  • Alternative Title:
    Crit Care Med
  • Description:

    Ventilator-associated event surveillance was introduced in the National Healthcare Safety Network in 2013, replacing surveillance for ventilator-associated pneumonia in adult inpatient locations. We determined incidence rates and characteristics of ventilator-associated events reported to the National Healthcare Safety Network.

    Design, Setting, and Patients:

    We analyzed data reported from U.S. healthcare facilities for ventilator-associated events that occurred in 2014, the first year during which ventilator-associated event surveillance definitions were stable. We used negative binomial regression modeling to identify healthcare facility and inpatient location characteristics associated with ventilator-associated events. We calculated ventilator-associated event incidence rates, rate distributions, and ventilator utilization ratios in critical care and noncritical care locations and described event characteristics.

    Measurements and Main Results:

    A total of 1,824 healthcare facilities reported 32,772 location months of ventilator-associated event surveillance data to the National Healthcare Safety Network in 2014. Critical care unit pooled mean ventilator-associated event incidence rates ranged from 2.00 to 11.79 per 1,000 ventilator days, whereas noncritical care unit rates ranged from 0 to 14.86 per 1,000 ventilator days. The pooled mean proportion of ventilator-associated events defined as infection-related varied from 15.38% to 47.62% in critical care units. Pooled mean ventilator utilization ratios in critical care units ranged from 0.24 to 0.47.


    We found substantial variability in ventilator-associated event incidence, proportions of ventilator-associated events characterized as infection-related, and ventilator utilization within and among location types. More work is needed to understand the preventable fraction of ventilator-associated events and identify patient care strategies that reduce ventilator-associated events.

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