A six-week public consultation process was launched today, and the standards when published will be the first of their kind.
The standards will cover all health and social care services provided in the community, including ambulance, GP and family doctor services, nursing homes, residential centres for people with a disability, health centres, dental clinics and home care.
“Research shows residents in long-term residential care facilities such as nursing homes are particularly vulnerable to healthcare-associated infections,” said Ms Rachel Flynn, HIQA’s Director of Health Information and Standards.
“In addition, antimicrobial resistance, where medicines fail to treat previously manageable infections, presents a serious global threat.
“The standards aim to help counter that growing threat, as preventing infections from occurring in the first instance is one of the best ways to reduce the need to prescribe antimicrobial medication and prevent antimicrobial resistance.”
Infection prevention and control refers to the measures services put in place to ensure they are providing safe care in a clean environment.
The draft national standards can be downloaded from HIQA’s website at www.hiqa.ie