Updates to CDC’s Core Infection Prevention and Control Practices

Emergency Preparedness; Programs and Resources

The CDC’s Core Infection Prevention and Control Practices for Safe Healthcare Delivery in All Settings is now available. The “core practices” were previously recommendations of the Healthcare Infection Prevention and Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC). The CDC considers these core practices to be fundamental standards for wherever health care is delivered.  

Key information includes: 
  1. Two new practices were added: 
    1. 5c. Injection and Medication Safety:  Prepare medications in a designated clean medication preparation area that is separated from potential sources of contamination, including sinks or other water sources.   
    2. 5e. Minimizing Potential Exposure:  Develop and implement systems for early detection and management of potentially infectious persons at initial points of patient encounter in outpatient settings and at the time of admission to hospitals and long-term care facilities. ​
  2. Addition of consideration for broader use of source control during periods of higher levels of community respiratory virus transmission was also added to the section addressing Minimizing Potential Exposures. 
    1. During periods of higher levels of community respiratory virus transmission*, facilities should consider having everyone mask upon entry to the facility to ensure better adherence to respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette for those who might be infectious. Such an approach could be implemented facility-wide or targeted toward higher risk areas (e.g., emergency departments, urgent care, units experiencing an outbreak) based on a facility risk assessment. 
                   *Examples of potential metrics include, but are not limited to, increase in outbreaks of healthcare-onset respiratory infections,
                    increase in emergency department or outpatient visits related to respiratory infections. 

All of the core practices are accessible on the CDC’s website​.