Can you state some examples of regulatory or practice guidance for infection preventionists?
Imes: Have alcohol-based hand sanitizers in as many places as feasible. They seem to be used more often if they are readily available. Frequent handwashing is the key to reducing infections.
Review your practices regularly. It has been a couple years since the CMS requirements have changed. We all worked many hours getting new practices into place. Many of us have had a CMS survey in the last year, and that refocused our attention to infection prevention. It is time to go back and review the standards to make sure we have not missed anything.
Take advantage of free infection prevention webinars and continue to read articles in professional magazines on any infection control topics.
If you are the manager and infection control nurse in your facility, I recommend training a second nurse to be the IC nurse. The manager must always have an active role in infection prevention, but the more nurses who understand all the facets of infection control, the better it is for the facility.
Applen: There are many associations and organizations that have published material that is eminent to the preservation of infection control. The following should be reviewed and put into practice:
1. CDC/HICPAC for Hand Hygiene, environmental cleaning
2. ANSI/AAMI ST79 for sterilization guidelines
3. AORN’s “Perioperative Standards and Recommended Practices" and CDC’s “Disinfection and Sterilization Guidelines 2008"
4. APIC for “elimination guidelines"
5. Follow CMS for regulatory guidelines.