Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

VA Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Do Experts Understand Performance Measures? A Mixed-Methods Study of Infection Preventionists.

Govindan S, Wallace B, Iwashyna TJ, Chopra V. Do Experts Understand Performance Measures? A Mixed-Methods Study of Infection Preventionists. Infection control and hospital epidemiology. 2018 Jan 1; 39(1):71-76.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


OBJECTIVE Central line-associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Despite a nationwide decline in CLABSI rates, individual hospital success in preventing CLABSI is variable. Difficulty in interpreting and applying complex CLABSI metrics may explain this problem. Therefore, we assessed expert interpretation of CLABSI quality data. DESIGN: Cross-sectional survey PARTICIPANTS. Members of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA) Research Network (SRN) METHODS. We administered a 10-item test of CLABSI data comprehension. The primary outcome was percent correct of attempted questions pertaining to the CLABSI data. We also assessed expert perceptions of CLABSI reporting. RESULTS The response rate was 51% (n = 67).Among experts, the average proportion of correct responses was 73% (95% confidence interval [CI], 69%-77%). Expert performance on unadjusted data was significantly better than risk-adjusted data (86% [95% CI, 81%-90%] vs 65% [95% CI, 60%-70%]; P < .001). Using a scale of 1 to 100 (0, never reliable; 100, always reliable), experts rated the reliability of CLABSI data as 61. Perceived reliability showed a significant inverse relationship with performance (r = -0.28; P = .03), and as interpretation of data improved, perceptions regarding reliability of those data decreased. Experts identified concerns regarding understanding and applying CLABSI definitions as barriers to care. CONCLUSIONS Significant variability in the interpretation of CLABSI data exists among experts. This finding is likely related to data complexity, particularly with respect to risk-adjusted data. Improvements appear necessary in data sharing and public policy efforts to account for this complexity. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2018;39:71-76.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.