The prevention and control of infections in health services is an integral part of quality and safety improvement, and clinical risk management.
While not all healthcare-associated infections can be prevented, the Department of Health & Human Services works with health services to ensure that systems are in place to minimise their occurrence.
Key components for the effective prevention and control of healthcare-associated infections are:
- adherence to infection control guidelines and standards
- effective surveillance and monitoring
- judicious use of antibiotics
- appropriate hospital design, cleaning and maintenance standards
- sustainable hand hygiene program
- healthcare worker immunisation for vaccine-preventable diseases.
Victorian Respiratory Protection Program
Victorian hospitals and health services must implement a Respiratory Protection Program including fit testing of staff to reduce the risk of transmission of respiratory disease.
COVIDSafe health services audits
Between September and December 2020 the Department of Health conducted 44 audits of health services to review the implementation of COVIDSafe plans.
National standards and guidelines on infection prevention
The prevention and control of healthcare-associated infections are supported by nationally consistent standards and guidelines
Healthcare-associated infection prevention
The spread of healthcare-associated infections can be reduced through analysis of surveillance data and prompt feedback to health services.
Cleaning standards meet the expectations of both the public and healthcare workers that health services are delivered safely and effectively.
Infection prevention through antimicrobial stewardship
Victorian hospitals and health services have available a range of evidence-based guidelines, recommendations and programs to support antimicrobial stewardship.
Communicable disease management
Victorian health services are legally obligated to notify health authorities and the public of any outbreak of a communicable disease.
Hand hygiene is a national health safety and quality priority in reducing healthcare-associated infection.
Rural infection control centres
Rural infection control centres provide a comprehensive statewide infection prevention and control service.
Reviewed 17 March 2022