If you have any questions about this policy proposal, please send an email to grassroots@shea-online.org.

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What is the NHSN?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) is the largest and most widely used healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) tracking system to date. The NHSN provides facilities, states, regions, and the nation with data needed to identify problem areas, including information on antibiotic use and resistance, measure progress of prevention efforts, and ultimately eliminate HAIs.

The NHSN is the vehicle the CDC uses to track central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI), catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI), surgical site infections (SSI), methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), and Clostridioides Difficile infections.

The funding for the NHSN allows for the CDC to provide technical support to more than 22,000 healthcare facilities, which represents 65,000 users across the continuum of care.

For medical centers, NHSN gives healthcare facilities the ability to see their data in real-time and share that information with clinicians and facility leadership, as well as with other facilities (i.e. a multi-hospital system) and partners such as health departments or quality improvement organizations. CDC provides the standard national measures for HAIs as well as analytic tools that enable each facility to assess its progress and identify where additional efforts are needed.

For states and the nation at large, HAI trends are used to identify emerging problems and areas of concern that need intervention, and to measure progress in HAI reduction against national, state, and local prevention goals.

How is SHEA advocating for the NHSN?

SHEA actively advocates for federal investments in maintaining NHSN and improving healthcare facility participation. Robust funding will allow CDC to continue to collect and share aggregated data on national HAI rates, support assessment of antibiotic prescribing, and enhance prevention efforts by identifying healthcare facilities for improvement. This support will support investments in modernizing NHSN’s infrastructure, critical user support, and provide innovative HAI prevention approaches.

Where does SHEA stand?

The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA) is requesting an increase in annual funding for NHSN to $22.75 million for FY 2020 and beyond.

SHEA has and will continue robust funding for NHSN and work with other stakeholders such as the CDC Coalition, Stakeholders Forum on Antimicrobial Resistance, and the Coalition for Health Funding to ensure NHSN continues to receive funding to aid epidemiologists, healthcare facilities and the patients they serve across the United States in tracking, preventing, and ultimately, eliminating healthcare-associated infections, along with receiving other needed data.

How can I get involved?

SHEA understands and appreciates your desire to stay informed and to get directly involved in SHEA’s next steps. To receive regular updates and to receive instructions on how to get involved, join SHEA’s Grassroots Network by texting PREVENTION to 52886 or sending an email grassroots@shea-online.org with the subject line “Subscribe.”

Time Line

July 2019
April 2019
  • SHEA and the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) provide testimony to the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies on Fiscal Year 2020 Appropriations for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
  • PRESS RELEASE: NHSN helps track Higher C-section Infection Risk for Mothers on Medicaid
May 2016
January 2015
May 2014
March 2012