The policies, procedures and lines of accountability for specific areas within an organisation.
An unplanned or unanticipated event involving actual (or potential) risk or harm to patients. In the context of this guide, this would be an infection occurring as a result of medical or surgical intervention or contact with a healthcare setting.
Improving the provision of services and practice by using a range of audit and statistical tools to assess the current situation, identify areas for improvement and measure the results.
The use of soap or solution (non-antimicrobial or antimicrobial) and water, or a waterless antimicrobial agent, to remove transient or residual organisms from the hands.
Techniques and approaches that provide an opportunity to evaluate current practice, identify areas for improvement and disseminate the findings.
Local leaders and role models – either within a trust, or working in settings that link to that trust – promote the principles of safe, clean care or good prescribing practices during the day-to-day operation of their service. Link practitioners may have a clinical or lay background. An example of the former could be a nurse or pharmacist. An example of the latter could be a patient liaison officer..
The scheduling of planned maintenance to prevent damage, breakdown and functional failures.
Active monitoring of infection at patient, ward, trust or national level. This involves counting cases over time and recognising and controlling outbreaks and adverse trends. It also involves producing complete epidemiological records of infection outbreaks and adverse incidents which describe and summarise all cases.