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Surgical Site Infection

A surgical site infection (SSI) occurs at the site of a surgical incision (cut). Germs can sometimes get into the incision and cause an infection. An infection can occur any time after surgery but most commonly develops shortly afterward, usually within 30 days of an operation. Sometimes infections can occur much later, especially if an implant (such as a joint replacement, for example) is used.

SSIs are among the most common health-care-associated infections. SSIs can be minor, but occasionally they can result in a longer length of stay in the hospital, or can lead to readmission to hospital. As a patient you can help reduce your chance of infection by following all of the pre-operative instructions given to you by your surgeon and health-care team and by not shaving the area where the incision will be made. More patient-specific information is available at patient safety.

For some operations, such as joint replacements, giving an antibiotic just before surgery is one of the best ways to reduce the risk of infection. This indicator ensures that one of the most important steps in preventing SSIs is being used – i.e., ensuring that antibiotics are administered at the right time, just before a hip or knee joint replacement surgery.

Surgical Site Infection Rates 2017

The public reporting of this indicator will reveal the percentage of all first time hip and knee replacement surgery patients who get antibiotics at the right time, just before joint replacement surgery. It is important to note that this indicator does not measure actual surgical site infections.


 Reporting Period

 Combined Rate

 January - March


 April - June


 July - September


 October - December