Mission to ZERO initiative aimed at resetting U.S. blood culture contamination benchmark

Sept. 3, 2020

Magnolia Medical Technologies, Inc. announced the launch of Mission to ZERO, a nationwide initiative to create greater awareness of the patient safety and antibiotic-associated risks caused by false-positive diagnostic test results for sepsis. 

The goal of the initiative is to drive change by improving national blood culture guidelines and contamination benchmarks, while partnering with hospitals in their mission to eliminate blood culture contamination and false-positive central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs) reporting.  

High blood culture contamination rates are responsible for excessive broad-spectrum antibiotic usage, compromising antimicrobial stewardship efforts and exposing patients to antibiotic-associated adverse drug events including multidrug-resistant organism infections, C. difficile infection and acute kidney injury. 

Currently, blood culture is the standard of care test used to diagnosis sepsis in the United States. Unfortunately, the national benchmark for acceptable rates of contamination sits at three percent. At this performance level, 35 percent to over 50 percent of all positive blood cultures are actually false positive in an average hospital. This equates to hundreds of patients seriously impacted annually in an average hospital and over 1.4 million patients annually in the US at risk of inappropriate treatment from a diagnosis that may not be accurate, which compromises patient safety and can cause unnecessary health complications. In addition to health risks, an estimated $6 billion is wasted within the US healthcare system each year associated with false-positive blood culture results.  

Based on recently established scientific evidence, significantly better national performance is achievable for blood culture accuracy. Based on this evidence, a multi-discipline consensus manuscript published in the leading peer-reviewed journal Clinical Microbiology Reviews in January 2020 supports lowering this benchmark to less than one percent – representing a 66 percent reduction to the current standard of care. 

To make this a reality, Magnolia is launching this national patient safety initiative by partnering with emergency departments, critical care units, clinical laboratories, and infection prevention teams within acute care hospitals across the country who see the impact of patient misdiagnoses every day. Each team member makes an individual pledge to participate, which allows all departments to work in tandem to ensure the best possible patient outcomes and experience are achieved.  

“We are proud to introduce the Mission to ZERO initiative, empowering all healthcare workers to have a direct impact on helping prevent the risk of patients experiencing a misdiagnosis of sepsis while further enabling driving antibiotic stewardship,” said Bullington. “We will achieve this mission through a combination of supporting change in national guidelines and benchmarks, Steripath technology solutions and a strong partnership with our healthcare community – which begins with each individual patient, healthcare worker and hospital uniting as one team. As a team, we can help stop the significant clinical and economic challenges associated with false-positive blood culture results.”  

“Once in a lifetime, Infection Preventionists have an opportunity to really make a difference in the lives of their patients. Steripath and Mission to ZERO have provided such an opportunity,” said Shannon Colleen Jordan, RN, BSN, CIC, Infection Prevention Manager, University Medical Center of El Paso. “Our biggest silent threat in Infection Prevention is multidrug-resistant organisms. By using Steripath, we not only decrease blood culture contamination rates, but also decrease antibiotics used as a result of false positive blood cultures. This is a win-win situation!”  

The patented Steripath Gen2 ISDD product portfolio, including both direct-to-media and syringe configurations, is the only FDA 510(k)-cleared device platform indicated to reduce blood culture contamination. This exclusive indication was cleared by the FDA based on peer-reviewed published controlled clinical studies demonstrating Steripath’s ability to reduce blood culture contamination by 83 percent and 88 percent.  

The Steripath Gen2 platform integrates user-controlled negative pressure to divert and sequester the initial 1.5 to 2.0 mL of blood collected for culture, the portion known to most likely contain contaminants.4 The device has been clinically proven for use with blood cultures drawn via both venipuncture and peripheral IV starts.  

Magnolia Medical Technologies, Inc. has the release