Decreasing the Risks Associated with Surgical Site Infections (SSI)

A recent New York Times article shed light on a surprising cause of Surgical Site Infections (SSI) – warmer weather. The research around causes SSI begs a question: How can providers work to decrease infections even when the weather works against them?

Providers have clear goals in reducing instances of SSI. According to the CDC, one in three patients will develop an SSI post-surgery. Surgical site infections are some of the most-common occurring and can be costly to address. As healthcare payments shift from fee-for-service to value-based care models, surgeons, hospitals, and outpatient facilities will need to work together to proactively address potential infections regardless of cause.

To reduce infections, one of the best methods is to proactively follow-up with patients and ensure they do not see signs of infection such as redness around the surgical site or developing a fever. While many hospitals and surgical centers are already following up with patients, many patients are unreached and at-risk for infection.

To maximize efficiency, using a solution such as CipherOutreach post-discharge follow-up can provide customizable calls and texts to patients post-op. This outreach allows patients to evaluate their recovery and indicate an issue or concern. Should a patient indicate an issue on a call or text, designated staff members are immediately notified and can resolve the issue. With CipherOutreach, patients can even text images of their surgical sites to streamline processes and ensure proper treatment is administered.

To learn more about how CipherOutreach follow-up calls and texts can help decrease instances of SSI, click here.

As CipherHealth’s Chief Nursing Officer, Lisa Romano, MSN, RN brings more than 25 years of experience in clinical practice, healthcare IT strategy, and healthcare operations to her current role. Prior to previous CNO roles, Lisa spent 19 years as a nurse and hospital administrator at Lehigh Valley Hospital and Health Network in Allentown, PA, where she was responsible for all patient flow and transfer center operations as well as numerous quality and patient satisfaction initiatives. Lisa is passionate about improving the health of patients across the healthcare continuum.