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Preventing Healthcare-associated Infections

Healthcare-associated infections (HAI) are a threat to patient safety. CDC provides national leadership in surveillance, outbreak investigations, laboratory research, and prevention of healthcare-associated infections. CDC uses knowledge gained through these activities to detect infections and develop new strategies to prevent healthcare-associated infections. Public health action by CDC and other healthcare partners has led to improvements in clinical practice, medical procedures, and the ongoing development of evidence-based infection control guidance and prevention successes.

HHS Action Plan to Prevent Healthcare-associated Infections

The prevention and reduction of healthcare-associated infections is a top priority for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The HHS Steering Committee for the Prevention of Healthcare-Associated Infections was established in July 2008, the Steering Committee, along with scientists and program officials across HHS, developed the HHS Action Plan to Prevent Healthcare-Associated Infections, providing a roadmap for HAI prevention in acute care hospitals.


Infection Control Assessment Tools

Tools to assist health departments in assessing infection prevention practices and guide quality improvement activities.

Targeted Assessment for Prevention (TAP)

The TAP strategy is a method to use data for action to prevent HAIs.

State Policy Resources

CDC has been working to identify policy options and best practices to support HAI prevention and improve healthcare outcomes.

Epidemiology and Laboratory Capacity (ELC) HAI Funded Activities

Funded investments to bolster states’ abilities to prevent healthcare-associated infections.

Guidelines and Recommendations

General guidelines, device-associated infection prevention guidelines, procedure-associated infection prevention guidelines, etc.

Prevention Toolkits

Slide sets by setting, slide sets by device, slide sets by pathogen, collaboration primer.

Basic Infection Control and Prevention Plan for Outpatient Oncology Settings

This document has been developed for outpatient oncology facilities to serve as a model for a basic infection control and prevention plan.

Guide to Infection Prevention for Outpatient Settings: Minimum Expectations for Safe Care

This document is a summary guide of infection prevention recommendations for outpatient (ambulatory care) settings.

Tools for Protecting Healthcare Personnel

Video, slides, posters, guidance.


Additional CDC Patient Safety Websites


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