CDC posts infection control checklist for outpatient settings

By: July 14th, 2011 Email This Post Print This Post

As a companion to the infection prevention guide for outpatient settings released in May, the CDC has posted Prevention Checklist for Outpatient Settings: Minimum Expectations for Safe Care.

According to the CDC, the checklist should be used:

  • To ensure that the facility has appropriate infection prevention policies and procedures in place and supplies to allow healthcare personnel to provide safe care.
  • To systematically assess personnel adherence to correct infection prevention practices. (Assessment of adherence should be conducted by direct observation of healthcare personnel during the performance of their duties.)

There are 12 areas of focus on the checklist, and some sections will not apply to all facilities. But for deficiencies identified by the checklist, “efforts should be made to correct the practice, appropriately educate healthcare personnel (if applicable), and determine why the correct practice was not being performed,” advises the CDC.

Some infection control lapses, such as unsafe injection practices—re-use of syringes on more than one patient or to access a medication container that is used for subsequent patients; re-use of lancets—pose serious threats to patient safety. In addition to being halted immediately, “such lapses warrants immediate consultation with the state or local health department and appropriate notification and testing of potentially affected patients,” according to the check list.

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