Evaluating the direct economic burden of health care–associated infections among patients with colorectal cancer surgery in China

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Little is known about the direct economic burden associated with health care–associated infection (HAI) in patients undergoing colorectal cancer surgery in China. This study aims to fill this knowledge gap.


This study was a prospective monitoring case-control study. The direct economic burden was presented as the median of the 1:1 pair differences of various hospitalization fees and hospital length of stay. Wilcoxon signed-rank tests were used to explore the differences in the direct economic burden.


Out of 448 patients, 38 had acquired HAIs, with the infection incidence being 8.93%. The total direct economic burden of HAIs was $1,589.30 (P < .05). Among various infection sites, deep surgical site infection had the highest direct economic burden of $8,654.44, followed by multisite infections ($5,946.52). When it comes to various hospitalization costs, the cost for Western medicine ($846.13) constituted the highest proportion of economic burden followed by treatment cost ($145.73) and bed charge ($126.75). On average, the length of hospital stay in the infection group was 6 days longer than that in the control group (P < .05).


HAI was associated with considerable economic burden for patients who underwent colorectal cancer surgery in China. The study highlights the necessity of taking effective measures to decrease incidence of HAIs to reduce economic burden.

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