G_IPC_32 Outbreaks of Communicable Diseases

The guideline defines the necessary measures required to control are put in place to reduce avoidable risks of exposure to infection to patients and staff associated with outbreaks. It concerns instances where it is suspected or recognised that cross infection has occurred during the care of patients and serves to provide staff with guidance as to the correct course of action they should undertake. It serves to ensure that all individuals, departments and any outside agencies likely to be involved in an outbreak have a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities.

The aim of the guideline is to ensure that a coordinated approach to the managing of an outbreak is undertaken by:

  • Promptly identifying and managing the infection outbreak.
  • Quickly identifying the source, method of spread and causative organisms responsible for the outbreak.
  • Reducing the spread of the organism.
  • Ensuring all individuals, departments and any outside agencies likely to be involved in an outbreak have a clear understanding of their roles and are fully briefed.
  • Disseminate information concerning the outbreak efficiently to ensure the rapid mobilisation of resources.
  • Reduce the risk for further recurrence of the infection.

The principles contained within the guideline reflects best practices and applies to those members of staff who are directly employed by Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust and for whom the Trust has legal responsibility. It provides advice on the working practices which may be required when managing an outbreak of communicable disease.

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