What is a Central-Line Infection - Blood Stream Infection (CLI-BSI)?
When a patient requires long-term access to medication or fluids through an IV, a central line is put in place. A central-line blood stream infection can occur when bacteria and/or fungi enters the blood stream, causing a patient to become sick. The bacteria can come from a variety of places (e.g., skin, wounds, environment, etc.), though it most often comes from the patient's skin.

Headwaters follows best practices on how to prevent bacteria from entering into a central line. Patients in the ICU often require a central-line since they are seriously ill, and will require a lot of medication, for a long period of time.
How serious are CLI bloodstream infections for patients?
Sometimes, a central-line infection may spread to the blood stream and may affect organ function, and in severe cases may cause death.

Patient safety remains the most important priority for Headwaters Health Care Centre; this involves ensuring that patients are not at risk for contracting health care-associated infections.

We have sound infection control programs in place and are committed to using standardized patient safety data and public reporting to drive further improvements.

Can you only get a central-line infection in an ICU?
You can get a central-line infection in any environment if you have a central-line in place (i.e., a hospital ward or at home). However, patients that develop a central-line blood stream infection usually become sick very quickly, and are transferred to an ICU for immediate treatment.

How are CLI bloodstream infections treated?
CLIs are treated with antibiotics, and patients are usually transferred to the ICU. In all cases they are cared for by a team of highly skilled professionals.

Do people contract central-line infections because of improper sterilization of hospital equipment?
There are many different causes for central-line infection. Infection control practices require that central-lines are inserted into patients in a sterile environment, and with sterile equipment. There are best practice recommendations known as "central-line bundles" that when grouped together reduce the changes of contracting a central-line infection.