Past Project Highlights

Identifying risk factors for urinary tract infections in older adults with trauma injuries

This project aimed to determine risk factors for urinary tract infections in older adults with trauma injuries. Of the 33,257 patients drawn from the Trauma Quality Improvement Program database, about 4.5 percent developed a urinary tract infection, with risk factors identified that include:

  • Being female
  • Being older than 75
  • Presence of ascites, moderate head injury, impaired sensorium or congestive heart failure
  • Duration of hospital stay

Mayo researchers determined that duration of stay has a profound impact on the development of urinary tract infections but that overall injury severity does not. In addition, given that there are multiple nonmodifiable risk factors, there may be a need for increased screening to detect occult urinary tract infections.

Read the study abstract.

Evaluating reimbursement guidelines for postoperative urinary tract infections in older adults undergoing emergency surgery

Since 2008, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has considered postoperative urinary tract infections to be a potentially preventable condition and therefore not reimbursable. After looking at 53,879 older adults undergoing emergency surgery, of which 3.5 percent developed a postoperative urinary tract infection before hospital discharge, Mayo researchers found that patients developing infections have few modifiable risk factors.

Researchers concluded that in light of this, lack of reimbursement is not justified — and that while targeted interventions may be developed to prevent postoperative urinary tract infections, this complication is not easily preventable in such a challenging patient population.

Read the study abstract.

Increasing care value and predictability in Mayo's adult cardiac surgery practice

Physicians, surgeons and researchers evaluated a new care model for how adult cardiac surgery patients are managed at Mayo Clinic, asking whether some portion of that population was similar enough that they could be managed in a more uniform, structured way rather than relying on physicians to individually determine each patient's course of care.

They determined that such a uniform approach was appropriate for 67 percent of cardiac surgery patients and, using industrial engineering principles and health information technology tools, crafted and implemented a new model for this segment of patients. Results showed that the new model reduced hospital length of stay, costs and amount of resources used while also decreasing variation and improving outcomes.

Read the study abstract.

Reducing variability in intraoperative care and management of mechanical ventilation

This project looked at how to reduce variability in how mechanical ventilation is used in cardiac surgery at Mayo Clinic. Researchers compared the more than 50 percent of patients undergoing cardiac surgery who were managed with a standardized care model in 2012 with patients undergoing surgery in 2008, when there was no standardized model.

Results showed that the standardized model reduced median mechanical ventilation duration from 9.3 hours (2008) to 6.3 hours (2012) and intensive care unit length of stay from 26.3 hours to 22.5 hours, both of which were statistically significant.

Read the study abstract.