Palisades Posts Impressive C diff Reduction   
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Palisades Posts Impressive C diff Reduction

What you need to know

The Palisades Clostridium difficile (C. diff) Prevention Program in 2018 reduced C. diff infections by 62 percent compared to 2017 — that's the largest improvement among all HMH hospitals.

In 2016-2017, Palisades experienced an unexplained increase in C. diff infections so the hospital formed a multidisciplinary team to tackle the issue.

How the Team Tackled C. diff

Jeffrey M. Raskin, M.D. alongside Doreen McSharry, director of safety/infection prevention for Palisades, assembled the multidisciplinary team.

Wearing "Don't be a Party POOPER; Wipe Out C diff" t-shirts are (left to right) Palisades’ Dr. Frank Lopez; Doreen McSharry; Dr. Jeffrey M. Raskin; Chief Medical Officer Dr. Aaron A. Stein; and Pharm D Medication Safety Officer Rose Lee.

The team created a series of measures that focused on two areas of greatest concern: the patients’ environment and hand washing.

  • All inpatients were given a soapy hand wipe on their meal trays, so they could clean their hands prior to eating.
  • All C. diff patients received disposable meal trays, plates and utensils that could be thrown out in the patient’s room trash.

Among other efforts that Palisades initiated are continuing medical education, training for team members and patient education that starts at admission with a C. diff brochure in every patient’s admission packet. Palisades also requires all team members practice effective hand hygiene and wash their hands with C. diff patients, disinfect surfaces with bleach and UV disinfectant, and when rooms are cleaned at the time of discharged, remove cubicle curtains.

Dr. Raskin also invited gastroenterology fellows to participate on the team.

Palisades’ C.diff Prevention Team will be presenting its accomplishments at the HMH Quality Research Conference May 16.

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