Current Projects

Project Name Description Collaborators Published Works
Use of administratively-coded data for monitoring infections in hospitalised patients with cancer New funding models for Australian hospitals utilise ICD-10 administratively-coded data to quantify hospital associated complications as a basis for funding disincentives. The objective of this project is to evaluate the validity of coded data for monitoring healthcare-associated infections, and to explore the impact of new funding models upon cancer patients. Jake Valentine (Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre), A/Professor Lisa Hall (University of Queensland), Professor Karin Verspoor (University of Melbourne), A/Professor Leon Worth (University of Melbourne) Valentine JC, Hall L, Verspoor KM, Worth LJ. The current scope of healthcare-associated infection surveillance activities in hospitalized immunocompromised patients: a systematic review. Int J Epidemiol 2019; 48:1768-1782.

Valentine JC, Haeusler G, Worth LJ, Thursky KA. Sepsis incidence and mortality are underestimated in Australian intensive care unit administrative data. Med J Aust 2019; 210:188
Group B Streptococcus in surgical site and non-invasive bacterial infections worldwide: a systematic review and meta-analysis Group B streptococcal (GBS; Streptococcus agalactiae) disease epidemiology outside of pregnancy and the neonatal period is poorly characterised. We aimed to quantify the role of GBS as a cause of surgical site and non-invasive infections at all ages Simon Collin, National Infection Service, Public Health England, Colindale  
Reducing infection risks for hospitalised patients with diabetes through use of an enhanced monitoring system for glycaemic control Improved glycaemic control has been shown to reduce risk for infection in hospitalised patient with diabetes. The objective of this project is to evaluate quality of care in patients with diabetes (including incidence of infections) following implementation of a networked system for centralised monitoring of blood glucose used to support an enhanced monitoring service in hospitalised patients. Dr Rahul Barmanray (Melbourne Health), A/Professor Spiros Fourlanos (University of Melbourne), Professor Peter Colman (University of Melbourne), A/Professor Leon Worth (University of Melbourne)  
Development and evaluation of a national point prevalence survey (AC-NAPS) to monitor infections and antimicrobial use in aged care facilities
Surveillance of healthcare-associated infections is essential for effective infection prevention programs in hospitalised patients, but systems for monitoring and response are less well-developed in aged care settings. The objective of this project is to develop and evaluate a national point prevalence survey for annual monitoring of infections and antimicrobial prescribing in aged care facilities. National Centre for Antimicrobial Stewardship (NCAS), Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, VICNISS Coordinating Centre Bennett N, Imam N, Ingram R, James R, Buising K, Bull A, Chen CS, Thursky KA, Worth LJ. Skin and soft tissue infections and current antimicrobial prescribing practices in Australian aged care residents. Epidemiol Infect 2019; 147:e87 (doi:10.1017/S0950268819000128).

Bennett NJ, Bradford JM, Bull AL, Worth LJ. Infection prevention quality indicators in aged care: ready for a national approach. Aust Health Rev 2018 (accepted, in press).

Bennett N, Imam N, James R, Chen C, Bull A, Thursky K, Worth L. Prevalence of infections and antimicrobial prescribing in Australian aged care facilities: Evaluation of modifiable and non-modifiable determinants. Am J Infect Control 2018; 46:1148-1153.
Harnessing new technology to monitor high-risk patients for early detection of infection Patients undergoing dialysis are at high risk for infections, and early detection improves outcomes (including mortality). The objective of this project is to pilot the use of wearable technology (wrist watches with thermos-sensors) as a method for timely detection of infections in these patients. Professor Stephen Holt (Melbourne Health), Dr Jennifer Yo (Melbourne Health), Frank Volpato, Steve Christov, A/Professor Leon Worth (University of Melbourne) Holt SG, Yo JH, Karschimkus C, Volpato F, Christov S, Smith ER, Hewitson TD, Worth LJ, Champion de Crespigny P. Monitoring skin temperature at the wrist in hospitalised patients may assist in the detection of infection. Intern Med J 2020 (accepted, in press).
Multinational evaluation of systems for surgical site infection surveillance Surveillance for infections following surgery is an important element of infection prevention programs in hospitals, yet the impact of such monitoring over time is not known. The objective of this project is to evaluate the impact of standardised surveillance strategies on burden of surgical site infections in developed countries, and to estimate the time period over which risk reduction is realised. Dr Mohammad Abbas (University Hospital of Geneva), A/Professor Leon Worth (University of Melbourne) Abbas M, de Kraker M, Aghayey E, Astagneau P, Aupee M, Behnke M, Bull A, Choi HJ, de Greef SC, Elgohari S, Gastmeier P, Harrison W, Koek MBG, Lamogni T, Limon-Caceres E, Lower HL, Lyytikainen O, Marimuthu K, Marquess J, McCann R, Prantner I, Presterl E, Pujol M, Reilly J, Roberts C, Lusignari LS, Si D, Szilagyi E, Tanguy J, Tempone S, Triollet N, Worth LJ, Pittet D, Harbarth S. Impact of participation in a surgical site infection surveillance network: results from a large international cohort study. J Hosp Infect 2019; 102:267-276.
Joint infections data linkage (2015) Project aims to link VICNISS and VAED data and examine agreement in terms of infection; also look at burden of infections from 2003 to 2013. Possible linkage to NJRR subsequently Prof Richard deSteiger, Epworth Healthcare; Australian Orthopaedic Association National Joint Replacement Registry  
Joint infections (Peel) (2015) Study examined pathogens causing infections and adequacy of prophylaxis; also treatment and outcomes of early and late onset infections Dr Trish Peel  St Vincent’s Hospital  
ANZICS (2015) Aims to develop an improved method of stratifying or peer grouping Victorian Intensive Care Units for comparison of infection rates Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Society  

Completed Projects

Project Name Description Collaborators Link
STRUTI (2015) Point prevalence surveillance of urinary tract infections in both acute and aged care facilities in Victoria, ACT and Tasmania Professor Anne Gardner Australian Catholic University A/Prof Brett Mitchell Avondale College
Aged Care Grampians region (2009)      
Colorectal Bundle (2009) Development of a bundle of care for colorectal surgery to reduce risk of SSI Monash Health  Colorectal Module & Publication(J Hosp Infect 2011 Aug;78(4):297-301

ASCTS (2004) Linked VICNISS data with ASCTS data to examine completeness of each dataset, risk factors and patient risk Australian and New Zealand Society of Cardiac and Thoracic Surgeons  Publication (Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol,2007 Oct;28(10):1162-8