Surgical Site Infection Prevention


Norfolk General Hospital is "ineligible" for reporting surgical site infections at this time.


What does it mean to be an "ineligible hospital"?

All hospitals that perform hip and/or knee joint replacement surgeries are considered "eligible" and must publicly report SSI prevention percentages to the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care and on their hospital website.  Although NGH performs orthopedic surgery it is considered "ineligible" for public reporting because we do not perform total hip and/or total knee replacement surgeries.


NGH is an "ineligible hospital" does that mean no surgical site infections are tracked?

Norfolk General Hospital is committed to patient safety, including the prevention and control of all health care associated infections.  All surgeries performed at NGH are tracked for post operative Surgical Site Infection.  These rates are used to identify potential concerns and areas for improvement.  NGH does not perform hip and/or knee joint replacement surgeries and are "ineligible" for public reporting. 


What is a Surgical Site Infection (SSI)?

Germs can get into the surgical incision area and cause infection.  It can develop within 30 days of an operation.  Infections can be minor, or occasionally they can cause complications that result in a longer length of stay, or longer recovery time. 


How do patients get a surgical site infection?

There are various factors that could put a patient at risk of an SSI. For example, patients that have poor circulation, certain medical conditions, or shave themselves before surgery (this causes little nicks and cuts in the skin where germs can enter) have an increased risk of infection.


To try to reduce the number of surgical site infections, Safer Healthcare Now and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) have shared with hospitals a set of best practices in the form of "SSI bundles". These "bundles" are a collection of best practices (for example, administration of prophylactic antibiotics, clipping and not shaving of body hair, etc.) that, when used together, can reduce the chances of a patient contracting a surgical site infection


Our hospital is committed to keeping our patients as safe as possible from infection. We have incorporated many best practices to reduce our surgical site infections.


Hand Hygiene copy

Prevent the Spread of Germs!