Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infections

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection of the urinary system, including the bladder and kidneys. A UTI related to the use of bladder catheters while in the hospital is a catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI). CAUTI events have been associated with increased patient complications, hospital costs and number of days spent in the hospital. The good news is that many CAUTI events may be prevented.

How do we prevent CAUTI events?

At Le Bonheur, we prevent CAUTI events by taking precautions with both the insertion and maintenance of catheters:


  • Clean hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub before and after patient contact.
  • The placement of catheter is done as a sterile procedure.
  • Tubing is secured to the patient's leg. 
  • The catheter system is kept closed, reducing contamination risk.


  • Maintain a closed drainage system
  • Maintain an unobstructed urinary flow. 
  • Keep the fluid bag below the level of the bladder and off of the floor. 
  • Do not clean perianal area with antiseptics. 
  • Obtain all specimens via a closed access system after appropriate disinfection.

How we're getting better

We participate in the Children’s Hospital’s Solutions for Patient Safety (CHSPS) national improvement network. Through this network, children’s hospitals from across the nation are working together to reduce catheter associated urinary tract infections.