Magnolia Medical launches initiative aimed at resetting national blood culture contamination benchmark

Sept. 3, 2020

Magnolia Medical Technologies has announced the launch of Mission to ZERO, a nationwide initiative to create greater awareness of the patient safety and antibiotic-associated risks caused by false-positive diagnostic test results for sepsis. The goal of the initiative is to drive change by improving national blood culture guidelines and contamination benchmarks, while partnering with hospitals in their mission to eliminate blood culture contamination and false-positive central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs) reporting.

High blood culture contamination rates are responsible for excessive broad-spectrum antibiotic usage, compromising antimicrobial stewardship efforts and exposing patients to antibiotic-associated adverse drug events including multidrug-resistant organism infections, C. difficile infection and acute kidney injury.

Currently, blood culture is the standard of care test used to diagnosis sepsis in the United States. Unfortunately, the national benchmark for acceptable rates of contamination sits at 3 percent. At this performance level, 35 percent to over 50 percent of all positive blood cultures are actually false positive in an average hospital. This equates to hundreds of patients seriously impacted annually in an average hospital and over 1.4 million patients annually in the U.S. at risk of inappropriate treatment from a diagnosis that may not be accurate, which compromises patient safety and can cause unnecessary health complications. In addition to health risks, an estimated $6 billion is wasted within the U.S. healthcare system each year associated with false-positive blood culture results.

Based on recently established scientific evidence, significantly better national performance is achievable for blood culture accuracy. Based on this evidence, a multi-discipline consensus manuscript published in Clinical Microbiology Reviews in January 2020 supports lowering this benchmark to less than 1 percent – representing a 66 percent reduction to the current standard of care.

To make this a reality, Magnolia is launching this national patient safety initiative by partnering with emergency departments, critical care units, clinical laboratories, and infection prevention teams within acute care hospitals across the country who see the impact of patient misdiagnoses every day. Each team member makes an individual pledge to participate, which allows all departments to work in tandem to ensure the best possible patient outcomes and experience are achieved.

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