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National Infection Prevention and Control Manual

Published on 17 June 2022

The National Infection Prevention and Control Manual (NIPCM) is the mandatory practice guide for infection prevention and control (IPC) for NHSScotland and is best practice in all other care settings. It is evidence based and aims to provide care staff with easily accessible information and supporting tools for infection prevention and control. It also aims to reduce practice variation across NHS Scotland and reduce the risk of Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI).

The following chapters can be found within the NIPCM:

Chapter one Standard Infection Control Precautions, describes the basic infection prevention and control measures necessary to reduce the risk of transmission of infectious agent from both recognised and unrecognised sources of infection. These should be used by all staff, in all care settings, at all times, for all patients whether infection is known to be present or not.

Chapter two Transmission Based Precautions, describes additional precautions required to be used by staff when caring for patients with a known or suspected infection of colonisation.

Chapter three Healthcare associated infection incidents, outbreaks & data exceedance, supports NHS Scotland boards in the early recognition of potential infection incidents. It also provides a guide for Incident Management Teams to help assess and investigate any outbreaks and incidents.

Included within the chapter are outbreak assessment tools and details of the outbreak reporting processes. which enables a single channel of infection incident and outbreak assessment as well as information reporting, both internally within a NHS board area and externally to ARHAI and Scottish Government Health and Social Care Department (SGHSCD).

The data is used to identify possible and emerging healthcare associated infection (HAI), infection prevention and control (IPC) and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) threats within Scotland, as well as informing learning for the wider IPC community.

Chapter four Infection Control in the Built Environment and Decontamination exists as a repository for evidence reviews and tools relating to IPC in the built environment, including delivery of appropriate decontamination within health and care settings and risk mitigation for water based pathogens. This chapter is in the early stages of development and currently does not fall into the mandatory requirements for the NIPCM.

Care home NIPCM

In order to support care homes successfully adopt and implement the National Infection Prevention and Control Manual (NIPCM), this context specific Care Home Infection Prevention and Control Manual (CH IPCM) has been co-produced with national and local stakeholders. The content of the CH IPCM is completely aligned to the evidence based NIPCM and is intended to be used by all those involved in residential care provision.

Winter (21/22), Respiratory Infections in Health and Care Settings Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) Addendum

This guidance has been developed during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic recognising the likelihood of a surge in other respiratory viruses in addition to COVID-19 over the winter season of 2021/22. It supersedes the three COVID-19 addenda (Acute, Care home and Community health and care settings) first published in October 2020. The transition away from the use of the Winter Respiratory Infection IPC addendum back to the main National Infection Prevention and Control Manual (NIPCM) commenced on Tuesday, 10 May. Therefore, this addendum will only remain live until Monday, 11 July.