Using a collaborative to reduce ventilator-associated pneumonia in Thailand

Akeau Unahalekhaka*, Silom Jamulitrat, Virasakdi Chongsuvivatwong, John Øvretveit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) is a serious nosocomial infection, leading to high mortality and high costs of treatment in developed and limited-resource countries. A collaborative quality improvement (QI) project was conducted in 18 secondary and tertiary care hospitals in Thailand to address the problem. Methods: The project, conducted between February 2004 and May 2005, entailed three face-to-face meetings - two national workshops and two regional workshops (each conducted twice). Education on VAP prevention, including guidelines and the ventilator bundle, was conducted for intensive care unit staff and all relevant personnel. The collaborative's effectiveness was assessed by VAP rate, a self-administered questionnaire, and face-to-face interviews. Results: Within 12 months, the pooled VAP rate decreased from 13.3 to 8.3 per 1,000 ventilator-days. The costs of antibiotic treatment for VAP decreased by more than one half. More than 80% of interviewed participants reported that the QI method could be applied effectively in their organization. Discussion: VAP surveillance during this project revealed a gradual reduction of the VAP rate. The project's relative overall success appears to reflect, as reported elsewhere, a well-organized program, support from hospital administrators, and workshop leaders' presentation of proven QI methods and clinical interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)387-394
Number of pages8
JournalJoint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2007
Externally publishedYes


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