Major Study at 43 HCA Hospitals -- Including Four Kansas City Hospitals -- Published In New England Journal of Medicine

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KANSAS CITY, Mo., June 21, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Belton Regional Medical Center, Lee's Summit Medical Center, Menorah Medical Center and Overland Park Regional Medical Center, part of HCA Midwest Health System—Kansas City's largest healthcare provider and private-sector employer—recently participated in a comprehensive infection prevention study with 39 other HCA hospitals. The study was conducted exclusively at 43 HCA-affiliated hospitals nationwide. The study was recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Known as Randomized Evaluation of Decolonization Versus Universal Clearance to Eliminate (REDUCE) MRSA, the study was conducted in conjunction with investigators at Harvard and several other academic institutions, and research programs at two U.S. Department of Health and Human Services agencies, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The use of antimicrobial agents on an entire patient population is referred to as universal decolonization. The study found that using antimicrobial soap and ointment to decolonize all intensive care unit patients reduced all bloodstream infections, including MRSA by 44 percent.

"HCA and its hospitals nationwide are continuously seeking ways to provide the highest quality patient care possible," says Darryl Nelson, MD, HCA Midwest Health System Chief Medical Officer. "It is our commitment to continually improve our high standards of care to give patients the best outcome possible. We are pleased four HCA Midwest Health System hospitals participated in this groundbreaking study."

The study's findings suggest a major change in healthcare practice that could improve the quality of care in every hospital and save lives. As a result of the findings, HCA is in the process of implementing universal decolonization in its adult intensive care units in each of its hospitals.

"The REDUCE MRSA study proved that universal decolonization is the best practice to prevent infection from MRSA and other dangerous bacteria in high risk ICU patients," says Jonathan B. Perlin, MD,

President, Clinical and Physician Services Group and Chief Medical Officer of HCA. "These compelling results convinced us to implement this protocol in HCA hospital adult ICUs. Universal decolonization should be a new part of a comprehensive infection prevention effort that begins with hand hygiene and includes a number of proven practices."

The study, which involved nearly 75,000 patients and more than 280,000 patient days in 74 adult ICUs located in 16 states, compared the results of three approaches in ICUs:

• Screen all patients and isolate MRSA carriers
• Targeted decolonization: screening, isolation, and decolonization of MRSA carriers with chlorhexidine and mupirocin ointment
• Universal decolonization: no screening and all patients decolonized with chlorhexidine and nasal mupirocin ointment.

The REDUCE MRSA team found that using universal decolonization reduced MRSA clinical cultures by 37 percent. Patients colonized with MRSA may not be sick, but they are at risk for later illness and for spreading it to others. All bloodstream infections were decreased by 44 percent. The researchers noted that this trial took place in HCA hospitals, mostly in community hospitals, rather than academic institutions and was conducted by hospital personnel rather than specially trained research staff. Therefore, unlike some clinical studies, these results are likely to be applicable to nearly all U.S. hospitals.

"It is exciting that Lee's Summit Medical Center was part of this national practice-changing healthcare study," says Lee's Summit Medical Center Chief Executive Officer Jackie DeSouza. "The implementation of new standards of care based on the results of this study can positively impact hospital patients far beyond the walls of Lee's Summit Medical Center. This is very good news for patient care."

"The unprecedented partnership of Menorah Medical Center with 42 other HCA hospitals throughout the country has yielded significant findings," says Steve Wilkinson, FACHE, President and Chief Executive Officer of Menorah Medical Center. "It will help make prevention of MRSA and other serious infections simpler and more effective and also sets a new standard for responsible infection prevention."

"This study demonstrates what can be accomplished for patient safety when we create the right partnerships," says John Jernigan, MD, MS, Director of CDC's Office of Prevention Research and Evaluation and head of CDC's Prevention Epicenters Program. "This unique collaboration between public health scientists, academic investigators and private hospitals allowed us to take novel infection prevention strategies to patients' bedside. With these critical partnerships, we can better protect patients and make healthcare safer."

REDUCE MRSA was a collaborative effort. The study concept and design was created by investigators in the CDC's Prevention Epicenter Program at the University of California, Irvine, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute and Harvard Medical School, Rush University and Washington University in St. Louis. AHRQ's Healthcare Associated Infections program provided funding, and the research was conducted through AHRQ's Developing Evidence to Inform Decisions about Effectiveness (DECIDE) network.

About Belton Regional Medical Center

Belton Regional Medical Center, conveniently located at Highways 71 and 58 in Belton, Missouri, is a 71-bed acute care hospital offering a full range of inpatient and outpatient services. Established in 1984, Belton Regional Medical Center's mission is to provide the citizens of southern Jackson and northern Cass counties access to critical health resources. The hospital was named as one of the nation's top performing hospitals on key quality measures by The Joint Commission, the nation's leading accredit or of healthcare organizations, in 2010 and 2011. Belton Regional Medical Center was recognized by for exemplary performance in using evidence-based clinical processes that are shown to improve care for pneumonia and surgical care. Our highly qualified physicians and skilled health professionals are dedicated to our community make it possible to meet this mission. For more information on Belton Regional Medical Center, visit

About Lee's Summit Medical Center

Lee's Summit Medical Center is an acute care hospital with more than 300 medical staff physicians and nearly 500 employees providing quality healthcare to Lee's Summit and the surrounding community. The full-service hospital offers all-private patient rooms, surgical and emergency services, and is an Accredited Chest Pain Center and a Primary Stroke Center. Lee's Summit Medical Center is a member of HCA Midwest Health System and has received the ACTION Registry® Get with the Guidelines™ – Heart Care – Gold; the American Heart Association's Mission: Lifeline® – Heart Care—Bronze; the American Heart Association's Get with the Guidelines ™ – Stroke – Gold Plus and the American Heart Association's Target: Stroke Honor Roll—2011. Lee's Summit Medical Center received the American College of Cardiology Foundation's NCDR ACTION Registry–GWTG Platinum Performance Achievement Award for 2012—one of only 164 hospitals nationwide to do so. The award recognizes Lee's Summit Medical Center's commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients. The hospital was named in 2012 as one of the nation's top performing hospitals on key quality measures by The Joint Commission, the nation's leading accreditor of healthcare organizations. Lee's Summit Medical Center was recognized for the second consecutive year for exemplary performance in using evidence-based clinical processes that are shown to improve care for heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia and surgical care. For more information on Lee's Summit Medical Center, visit

About Menorah Medical Center

Menorah Medical Center is a full-service, acute-care hospital located on the corner of 119th and Nall in Overland Park. The hospital serves the community's healthcare needs by providing compassionate care and some of the most advanced treatment options available in the Kansas City area. Menorah has a medical staff with more than 600 physicians covering the spectrum of specialties and offers exceptional experiences and extraordinary medicine for adults, newborns, children and teens. The Menorah culture of excellence fuels a commitment to meet and exceed the highest medical standards and to continually search for new and better ways to care for patients. Menorah Medical Center was the first hospital in Johnson County to be dual certified as an Accredited Chest Pain Center by the Society of Chest Pain Centers and Certified Stroke Care Center by The Joint Commission. The hospital was named in 2012 as one of the nation's top performing hospitals on key quality measures by The Joint Commission, the nation's leading accreditor of healthcare organizations. Menorah Medical Center was recognized by for exemplary performance in using evidence-based clinical processes that are shown to improve care for heart attack and pneumonia and surgical care. In addition, The Commission on Cancer accredits Midwest Cancer Care at Menorah Medical Center as a Comprehensive Community Cancer Program. The Breast Center at Menorah is fully accredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers. For more information on Menorah Medical Center and its services, visit

About Overland Park Regional Medical Center

Overland Park Regional Medical Center, part of HCA Midwest Health System, is a licensed 350-bed facility offering acute and outpatient medical care services, including a Regional Trauma Center, an Accredited Chest Pain Center, The Women's Center, a Level IIIB NICU, the Human Motion Institute, advanced diagnostic imaging, a Diabetes Center and many other services. Overland Park Regional Medical Center was named one of the nation's top performing hospitals on key quality measures by The Joint Commission, the nation's leading accreditor of health care organizations. Overland Park Regional Medical Center has received the Get With the Guidelines Stroke-Silver Performance Achievement Award from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association. The Breast Center of Overland Park Regional Medical Center is accredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC), which is administered by the American College of Surgeons. Accreditation by the NAPBC is only given to those centers that have voluntarily committed to provide the highest level of quality breast care and that undergo a rigorous evaluation process and review of their performance. In addition, the HCA Midwest Neonatal Transport Team, serving Kansas City and outlying areas, is headquartered at Overland Park Regional Medical Center. In fall 2012, OPRMC broke ground on a historic $110 million expansion for a new patient tower, Emergency Department and Trauma Center. For more information on Overland Park Regional Medical Center, visit

About HCA Midwest Health System

HCA Midwest Health System is the Kansas City area's largest healthcare network, consisting of 10 hospitals, outpatient centers, clinics, physician practices, surgery centers and an array of other services to meet the healthcare needs of the greater Kansas City area. HCA Midwest Health System is also the area's largest private sector employer with more than 9,000 employees, the largest provider of charity and uncompensated care, and annually donates more than $1.2 million to local charities. Since April 2003, HCA Midwest Health System has invested more than $845 million to enhance and expand patient services and has paid more than $216 million in taxes to local communities. HCA Midwest Health System facilities serving the Kansas City area include Research Medical Center, Research Psychiatric Center, Centerpoint Medical Center, Overland Park Regional Medical Center, Menorah Medical Center, Lee's Summit Medical Center, Belton Regional Medical Center, Lafayette Regional Health Center, Allen County Hospital and Cass Regional Medical Center. Midwest Physicians, which is part of HCA Midwest Health System, is a network of experienced, multi-specialty physicians located throughout the Greater Kansas City metropolitan area. Midwest Physicians currently represents 341 physicians, including 142 primary care providers and 194 specialists with 79 physician practices providing care in 146 locations to serve the community. The physicians, licensed professionals and support staff who comprise the HCA Midwest Health System team are dedicated to improving healthcare in the Greater Kansas City and outlying areas. For more information visit

CONTACT: Corrine Everson Vice President of Business Development and Marketing (816) 282-5759; cell (816) 509-0149 Amy Leiker Vice President of Marketing and Development (913) 498-7407, (913) 907-4393 Kimberly Winter Stern HCA Midwest Health System News Bureau (913) 449-4294

Source: HCA Midwest