Preventable healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) occur in US hospitals. Preventing these infections is a national priority, with initiatives led by healthcare organizations, professional associations, government and accrediting agencies, legislators, regulators, payers, and consumer advocacy groups. To assist acute care hospitals in focusing and prioritizing efforts to implement evidence-based practices for prevention of HAIs, the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America and the Infectious Diseases Society of America Standards and Practice Guidelines Committee appointed a task force to create a concise compendium of recommendations for the prevention of common HAIs. This compendium is implementation focused and differs from most previously published guidelines in that it highlights a set of basic HAI prevention strategies plus special approaches for use in locations and/or populations within the hospital when infections are not controlled by use of basic practices, recommends that accountability for implementing infection prevention practices be assigned to specific groups and individuals, and includes proposed performance measures for internal quality improvement efforts.
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