This actionable evidence-based practice blueprint provides a checklist for clinicians to create an action plan to prevent ventilator-associated pneumonia and ensure best patient care. This document is revised as needed to incorporate the latest best practices and gold standard of care. The e-book is available free of charge to anyone. © 2022 Patient Safety Movement Foundation.
Infections that develop after two days or more of mechanical ventilation are thought to be caused by pathogenic secretions entering the lower respiratory tract via the endotracheal tube or tracheostomy. Diagnosing the resulting ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) is challenging, as the available tools are inadequate to assess bacterial-induced lung injury. VAP is the leading cause of death among healthcare-associated infections, with an estimated 300,000 cases of VAP annually in the US. Mortality ranges between 20% and 60%, with an annual incidence of 4% to 48%. Patients who acquire VAP have a significantly longer course of mechanical ventilation and longer stay in the ICU. Yet prevention of VAP is inexpensive and could save up to $15 billion per year. By implementing this blueprint’s actionable steps, healthcare organizations can prevent complications and reduce VAP-related deaths.