Surgical site infections (SSI) continue to remain a national health care issue, raising costs due to prolonged hospitalization, additional diagnostic tests, treatment, and sometimes additional surgery. In fact, research suggests that SSIs can extend hospitals stays by 7-10 days and cost $27,402 per incident, accounting for up to $10 billion annually in health care spending.

Medline is working in partnership with the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare and Cleveland Clinic to share the latest SSI findings with health care leaders and medical device and clinical solution developers. The goal: uncover some of today’s real problems and barriers to spark serious dialogue and solutions.

OR Today Magazine | News and Notes | Reducing Colorectal Surgical Site Infections“At Medline, we’re committed to developing and improving medical devices and clinical solutions that advance health care,” says Sue MacInnes, chief market solutions officer at Medline and a member of the Joint Commission’s Leadership Advisory Council. “We work side-by-side with health care’s greatest thought leaders to help solve problems – it’s our strength to collaborate, innovate and create solutions. We are honored to have this opportunity to work with the Joint Commission and Cleveland Clinic to uncover new ways to reduce SSIs.”

Coleen Smith, director of high reliability initiatives for the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare, and Brad Schwartz, senior project manager of quality improvement for the Cleveland Clinic’s Quality and Patient Safety Institute, presented findings from The Reducing Colorectal Surgical Site Infections (SSI) project.

After two-and-a-half years, participating hospitals in the Reducing Colorectal Surgical Site Infections project experienced the following results:

• 45 percent reduction in superficial incisional SSIs

• 32 percent reduction in colorectal SSIs

• Estimated cost savings of more than $3.7 million for the 135 estimated colorectal SSIs avoided during the project period.

• The average length of stay for hospital patients with any type of colorectal SSI decreased from an average of 15 days to 13 days. •

Learn more about the latest findings at