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This award-winning blog supplements the articles in Hospital Infection Control & Prevention.

APIC develops infection control guide for first responders

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) face an unpredictable array of risks every day, from fires and hazardous materials to infectious diseases and sharps-related injuries. Who better to address infectious threats than the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, which has developed a free, downloadable Guide to Infection Prevention in Emergency Medical Services.

EMS system responders deliver medical care in many unique and oftentimes dangerous environments,” says Janet Woodside, RN, MSN, COHN-S, lead author of the guide, and EMS program manager for Portland, Ore. Fire and Rescue. “APIC saw a need to develop this guide because EMS agencies, including public safety and fire, needed a comprehensive, easy-to-use resource to enhance their knowledge of infection prevention strategies.”

Developed by a team of infection prevention experts, the guide presents topic-specific information in a user-friendly format that includes numerous examples, tools, checklists, and references to help increase the understanding of:

  • Infection prevention standards and regulations
  • Infectious diseases in EMS and strategies to prevent transmission
  • Use of personal protective equipment, disinfection procedures, and hand hygiene
  • Occupational exposure health issues
  • Surveillance and risk assessments in the EMS setting
  • Emergency, disaster, and bioterrorism preparedness