English hospitals under-report surgical site infections, survey shows

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f345 (Published 16 January 2013)
Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f345

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  1. Susan Mayor
  1. 1London

Patients develop wound infections after surgery far more often than is usually reported, show the results of a survey of English hospital trusts that reveal wide variations in how different hospitals collect and report this information.1

The researchers have called for a complete overhaul of the national surgical site infection surveillance system, a voluntary reporting scheme run by the Health Protection Agency, to improve its reliability. Their findings show that hospitals that conduct high quality surveillance of surgical site infections are penalised in the current surveillance service.

The research group sent questionnaires …

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