Healthcare Associated Infection Prevention and Control (HAI)
The Health Care Infection Prevention and Control Program oversee infection prevention and control activities in health care settings. Infection prevention and control demands a basic understanding of the epidemiology of diseases; risk factors that increase patient susceptibility to infection; and the practices, procedures and treatments that may result in infections.
Healthcare Associated Infections (HAIs) are infections that patients acquire during the course of receiving treatment for other conditions within a healthcare setting. HAIs are one of the top ten leading causes of death in the United States, accounting for an estimated 1.7 million infections and 99,000 associated deaths in 2002. As the Nation's health protection agency, CDC is committed to helping all Americans receive the best and safest care when they are treated at a hospital or other healthcare facility. In 1987, CDC introduced the definitions in the National Nosocomial Infections surveillance System (NNIS) and were modified based on comments from infection control personnel in NNIS hospitals and others involved in surveillance, prevention, and control of nosocomial infections. The definitions were implemented for surveillance purpose in NNIS hospitals in January 1988 and are the current CDC/NHSN definitions for HAIs.
Basic infection prevention measures are based on knowledge of the chain of transmission and the application of best practices in all settings at all times. The elements of best practices include: hand hygiene, risk assessment of clients, risk reduction strategies through use of personal protective equipment, cleaning the environment and equipment, laundry, disinfection and sterilization of equipment or use of single use equipment, waste management, sharps handling, client placement and healthy workplace initiatives, and education of health care providers, clients and families/visitors/caregivers.
Healthcare Associated Infection Progress Reports
HAI Task Force