Investigators Report on Decreased Quality of Care for Staphylococcus aureus Bacteremia During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia (SAB) is one of the most frequent bloodstream infections. High mortality of SAB can be significantly reduced by regular infectious disease (ID) consultations and appropriate clinical management. Arientová, et al. (2022) say that because the pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has had a negative impact on hospital ID service, it can be assumed that it has also led to decreased quality of care for SAB patients.

This study enrolled 68 patients with proven SAB who were hospitalized in Military University Hospital in Prague in 2019 and 2020 and the quality of care indicators for SAB patients were compared.

A total of 33 and 35 patients with SAB were hospitalized in the hospital in 2019 and 2020, respectively. The significant difference between the pandemic year 2020 and year 2019 was in ID consultations performed (74% vs. 100%; p = 0.002) and fulfilment of all quality of care indicators (66% vs. 93%; p = 0.012). Next, higher in-hospital mortality was observed in 2020 than in 2019 (6% vs. 23%; p = 0.085). There was no significant difference in the percentages of patients with performed echocardiographic examinations (66% vs. 83%; p = 0.156) and collected follow-up blood cultures (85% vs. 94%; p = 0.428). In addition, there was no difference between the two years in the adequate antibiotic therapy, sources, and bacterial origin of SAB.

Reference: Arientová S, et al. Decreased quality of care for Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia during the COVID-19 pandemic. BMC Infectious Diseases. Vol. 22, article number 631 (2022).