Healthcare Associated Infections

Key Documents

Infection Prevention and Control Policy

The NSW Health Infection Prevention and Control Policy outlines practices required to minimise the risk of patients, visitors, volunteers and health workers acquiring a healthcare associated infection, multi-resistant organism colonisation or communicable disease.

The primary purpose of the NSW Health Infection Prevention and Control Policy is to provide leadership to NSW Health Organisations on how to effectively prevent, manage and control healthcare associated infections (HAIs), in order to minimise the adverse health impacts on patients treated within health care and reduce the burden of HAIs.

Local infection prevention and control documents are to align with the principles outlined in the Policy and are consistent with the principles and practices outlined within the NSW Infection Prevention and Control Practice Handbook.

NSW Health Infection Prevention and Control Policy

    Infection Prevention and Control Practice Handbook

    Version 2 – Revision 1 September 2017

    The purpose of this  handbook is to provide practical, day-to-day guidance to support the implementation of the NSW Health Infection Prevention and Control Policy, which establishes the infection prevention and control standards for NSW public health organisations (PHOs). This handbook should be read in conjunction with the most current version of the Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare.

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    HAI Clinical Indicator Manual

    Surveillance is an essential component and the only rational basis of any disease control program. Control of communicable disease depends on first defining its epidemiology including incidence, risk factors, distribution, and disease burden. The effectiveness of control programs can only be determined by monitoring changes, from baseline, in rates of one or more well-defined, objective indicators that can be measured consistently across the target population and over time.

    Healthcare associated infections (HAIs) are varied, complex and difficult to measure. Many are caused by multi-resistant organisms (MROs) and difficult to treat. They cause significant excess morbidity, mortality and costs and a significant proportion is preventable. Reductions in HAI rates can be achieved by the effective implementation of “bundles” of apparently simple preventive measures.

    The HAI Clinical Indicator Manual outlines standardised case definitions, denominators and reporting requirements to ensure consistency across all areas and facilities. Definitions are consistent with those recommended by national and international authorities.

    Related NSW Health Policies and Guidelines

    Related NSW Health Policies and Guidelines are available at

    Related Safety Alerts, Safety Notices and Safety Information can be accessed at