Department of Health. The health and social care act 2008. Code of practice on the prevention and control of infections and related guidance. 2015. (accessed 13 December 2018)

World Health Organization. WHO guidelines on hand hygiene in health care: first global patient safety challenge. 2009. (accessed 13 December 2018)

Getting the basics right: reflections on infection prevention and control

10 January 2019
Volume 28 · Issue 1

Infection prevention and control (IPC) has been my passion for more than 20 years now, ever since I became fascinated by an outbreak of meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) within the intensive care unit at the hospital where I was a junior ward sister. It sparked an interest in IPC and led me down a new career path, and I am now a director of infection prevention and control (DIPC) in an NHS trust.

The post is a requirement under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 Code of Practice on the Prevention and Control of Infections and Related Guidance (Department of Health, 2015). As a full time DIPC who also happens to be an experienced and senior IPC specialist nurse, I am in a fairly unique position and I am proud to have been appointed. My extensive job description states that, as DIPC, I have corporate responsibility for infection prevention and control throughout the trust as delegated by the chief executive, reporting directly to the chief executive and the trust board. It's a position of significant, and sometimes overwhelming, responsibility and now that I have been in post for 2 years, this seems a good point at which to pause and reflect on what has changed in IPC since I first decided to specialise 20 years ago, and what the challenges currently are in terms of preventing and controlling healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs) within the NHS today.

Register now to continue reading

Thank you for visiting British Journal of Nursing and reading some of our peer-reviewed resources for nurses. To read more, please register today. You’ll enjoy the following great benefits:

What's included

  • Limited access to clinical or professional articles

  • Unlimited access to the latest news, blogs and video content