A sterile barrier is required for many neonatal procedures, including the placement of a central venous catheter (CVC) or a chest tube. The creation of this sterile barrier requires meticulous attention to multiple steps to minimize the risk of a hospital-acquired infection or a central line–associated bloodstream infection. The preparation is similar to a surgeon preparing for surgery in the operating room.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention maximum sterile barrier (MSB) precautions are defined as wearing a mask, sterile gown, sterile gloves, and cap and using a full body drape (similar to the drapes used in the operating room). In a randomized, controlled trial of adult patients with cancer, use of MSB precautions was compared to the use of sterile gloves and a small drape during insertion of a nontunneled CVC. The results showed that the MSB group had fewer episodes of catheter colonization and septicemia. The timing...

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