This report reflects some of the key work delivered by ARHAI Scotland to support Infection Prevention and Control (IPC), Healthcare Associated Infection (HCAI) prevention and tackling Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) during 2021. Data are provided for common HCAIs, which are an important cause of severe illness, death, and higher treatment costs.
ARHAI Scotland is part of NHS Scotland Assure which launched in June 2021. This new national body was created bringing together Health Facilities Scotland and ARHAI Scotland to work with stakeholders and Scottish Government to reduce risk in the healthcare built environment through a planned programme of work. This report introduces how ARHAI Scotland IPC experts have supported the vision of NHS Scotland Assure during 2021, strengthening IPC in the built environment.
During 2021, ARHAI Scotland remained a key part of the national COVID-19 response through monitoring hospital onset COVID-19; producing evidence and guidance; developing and delivering educational resources; and supporting health boards in their local pandemic responses. COVID-19 has impacted healthcare delivery in both hospital and community settings, changing the patient population and risk factors. Therefore, the wider HCAI data included in this report must be interpreted with due caution. ARHAI Scotland continues to regularly review HCAI surveillance in the context of the pandemic and work with NHS boards to interpret changes.