NHMRC Australian guidelines for the prevention and control of infection in healthcare

Cathy Connor1

1Director Public Health, National Health and Medical Research Council, GPO Box 1421 Canberra 2601. cathy.connor@nhmrc.gov.au


The 2010 Guidelines provide a basis for healthcare facilities to develop protocols and processes for infection prevention and control specific to local settings. The Guidelines have a risk management approach to preventing infection based around the following principles:

  • Part A: understanding risk management and modes of transmission of infectious agents
  • Part B: effective work practices
  • Part C: governance structures that support the implementation, monitoring and reporting of infection prevention and control work practices.

The Guidelines are aimed at all sectors of healthcare.  They are also a key resource for the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care’s National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards (Standard 3): preventing and controlling health care associated infections. As such, maintaining the currency and accuracy of the Guidelines is important.

NHMRC is well known in the health sector for the quality and integrity of its clinical practice guidelines, and the processes to revise them.  NHMRC is committed to keeping its guidelines current and reflective of the latest evidence, and is working with the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care to undertake this revision.

Two innovations are being used in this revision – the use of an internationally recognised approach to synthesise the evidence (GRADE), and reformatting the guidelines in an IT platform (MAGICapp). This presentation will update attendees on the revision, including key clinical issues of concern.


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