Preventing the transmission of infectious diseases among healthcare personnel (HCP) and patients is a critical component of safe healthcare delivery in all healthcare settings. Today, CDC published Infection Control in Healthcare Personnel: Infrastructure and Routine Practices for Occupational Infection Prevention and Control Services, an update of four sections of Part I of the Guideline for infection control in health care personnel, 1998 (“1998 Guideline“) and their corresponding recommendations in Part II:
· C. Infection Control Objectives for a Personnel Health Service
· D. Elements of a Personnel Health Service for Infection Control
· H. Emergency-Response Personnel
· J. The Americans With Disabilities Act
The updated recommendations are aimed at the leaders and staff of Occupational Health Services (OHS) and the administrators and leaders of healthcare organizations (HCO) and are intended to facilitate the provision of occupational infection prevention and control (IPC) services to HCP and prevent the spread of infections between HCP and others. Additional updates to the 1998 Guideline are underway and will be published in the future. Updates in Part I include:
· a broader range of elements necessary for providing occupational IPC services to HCP;
· applicability to the wider range of healthcare settings where patient care is now delivered, including hospital-based, long-term care, and outpatient settings such as ambulatory and home healthcare; and
· expanded guidance on policies and procedures for occupational IPC services and strategies for delivering occupational IPC services to HCP.
New topics include:
· administrative support and resource allocation for OHS by senior leaders and management,
· service oversight by OHS leadership, and
· use of performance measures to track occupational IPC services and guide quality improvement initiatives.