About the International Infection Control Branch (IICB)

The International Infection Control Branch (IICB) works to protect patients and healthcare personnel globally, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Working closely with partners and countries, we use our expertise, scientific evidence, and proven implementation strategies to support sustainable solutions to infectious disease threats in healthcare delivery, including:

  • Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs)
  • Antimicrobial resistance (AR)
  • Infectious disease outbreaks such as COVID-19, Ebola virus disease, and mpox

Read the July 2023 Clinical Infectious Diseases supplement featuring work by CDC and global partners to learn about the evolving global challenge of antimicrobial resistance and the need for a global effort to combat it.

Infection Prevention and Control

In our increasingly globalized world, infectious diseases can multiply and spread at alarming rates. Without proper infection prevention and control (IPC) programs and practices, healthcare settings may increase the spread of these germs, which can lead to outbreaks in the community and across international borders.

IPC is a patient safety and public health specialty that enables the safe delivery of healthcare through minimizing or eliminating the risk of infection. It is the cornerstone of a resilient healthcare system and protects healthcare workers, patients, and the surrounding community. IPC consists of programs, guidance and standards, education and training, supplies and equipment, monitoring and surveillance, investment, governance, research, and accountability.

In resource-limited settings, safe delivery of health services can be challenging due to inadequate IPC systems. Several factors may lead to higher rates of HAIs and AR in these settings, including:

  • A lack of trained IPC professionals and healthcare workers
  • Weak oversight and accountability systems to monitor safety
  • Overcrowding
  • Lack of essential water, sanitation, hygiene (WASH), environmental cleaning, and healthcare waste management
  • Limited investment in sustainable services

What We Do

Where We Work

The work of IICB would not be possible without our partners. Since 2014, IICB has worked with partners in the U.S. and around the world, including ministries of health, global public health organizations, academic institutions, other governmental organizations, and non-governmental organizations in over 44 countries to advance global healthcare safety.