Australasian College for Infection Prevention and Control Conference
ANZSRC / FoR Code
060502 Infectious Agents| 110309 Infectious Diseases| 111099 Nursing not elsewhere classified| 111709 Health Care Administration
Reportable Items (HERDC/ERA)
Introduction: In 2012 the Tasmanian Infection Prevention and Control Unit (TIPCU) implemented an Infection Control Assessment (ICA) program in rural hospitals and non-acute settings (RHANAS). The three main aims of the ICA program are:
- Build clinician capacity in RHANAS
- Have the ability to assess and manage infection control risks
- Foster local ownership of infection prevention and control by individual service providers and clinicians.
The project implementation and evaluation is ongoing.
Methods: The ICA consists of a range of location and process specific audits, designed specifically for RHANS. Each rural hospital in Tasmania participated in the ICA program during 2012. The program was undertaken collaboratively by a TIPCU CNC, regional infection prevention and control clinical nurse educator and either the DON of the hospital or a designated representative. The majority of the assessments were done on site at each rural hospital in conjunction with a short education program which was tailored on requests from each facility.
Results: Consistent themes emerged from the results of each rural hospital ICA. These included the following set of challenges relating to infection prevention and control:
- No management plan including no regular or structured auditing program
- No consistent orientation messages
- Limited direction for site portfolio holders
- Limited or no healthcare associated infection surveillance programs
- No ongoing education for staff
- Outdated policies and procedures
Conclusion: The TIPCU in conjunction with the regional Tasmanian Health Organisations (THO) are working collaboratively to address the challenges identified by the ICA program. The TIPCU have produced a template for an infection prevention and control management plan, a portfolio position description and tools for undertaking surveillance in RHANS. The additional challenges identified by the ICA are being addressed at the local THO level.
Wells, A., Wilson, F. & Mitchell, B. (2013, October 1-2). Tipcu engagement program in rural hospitals and non-acute settings. Paper presented at the Australasian College for Infection Prevention and Control Conference, Gold Coast, Australia.