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CPH cuts down on hospital infections

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POTSDAM — Canton-Potsdam Hospital has gone a year without any cases of ventilator-associated pneumonia in its intensive care unit, the result of procedural changes meant to reduce the risk of hospital infections.

The disease is among the most common hospital-acquired infections, affecting anywhere from 10 to 20 percent of all patients who undergo mechanical ventilation.

A ventilator helps patients breathe through a tube in the nose or mouth or a surgical opening in the neck. Preventing germs from entering the tube is a challenge for hospitals.

CPH kept the duration of ventilation to a minimum and instituted a rigorous hygiene procedure to reduce its cases.

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