Laws and Legislation

Infection Control Management within a healthcare environment or other business sector needs to be part of the employers’ overall aim of ensuring that they provide a safe working environment for personnel and others (contractors, visitors etc.) affected by the work undertaken. Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 requires the employer to ensure the health, safety and welfare of employees at work is managed.

Some other legislation relating to Infection Control Management includes:

  • Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences (RIDDOR) 2013
  • Public Health (Control of Diseases) Act 1984
  • The Public Health (Infectious Diseases) Regulations 1988
  • The Management of Health and Safety at Work (Amendment) Regulations 2006
  • Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) 2002
  • The Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013
  • Food Safety Act 1990
  • The Health Protection (Notification) Regulations 2010

Infection Prevention is everybody’s responsibility.

Infection control policy

The infection control policy needs to be live and reviewed where necessary as changes occur through new imported risk challenges within the workplace. Imported risk can range from personnel or other visitors such as contractors coming into the workplace with an infectious disease. It may be a case of a local outbreak of vomiting and diarrhoea spreading, or an epidemic or pandemic outbreak at international level that may potentially have an impact at local level.

checklist, check yes or no, decision

Infection control risk assessment

An infection control risk assessment must be carried out to assess infection hazards and risks and ensure that, where possible, infection risks are eliminated, reduced, contained and managed appropriately. The infection control risk assessment will identify tasks that may carry the risk of contamination or the spread of disease.

The infection control risk assessment will need to:

  • Identify the hazards within the workplace, including those that potentially may be brought into the workplace.
  • Decide who might be harmed, and how, and include visitors, contractors, vulnerable persons, registered disabled persons, pregnant women, young persons, children, elderly and those persons with medical issues.
  • Evaluate the risks and decide on precautions through ratings such as low, medium or high risk. The precautions and controls put in place must be proportionate to the risks. An example is if the risk is high then more robust controls may need to be put in place to reduce the risk to an acceptable level.
  • Record the significant findings of the risk assessment and communicate it to all relevant persons. The law requires that the employer provide employees with adequate information, training and supervision necessary to ensure their health and safety at work. Ensuring personnel understand the contents of the risk assessment and the role that they will take in managing any risk can be achieved through training. The type of training will depend on the individual, the sector in which they work and the tasks/work activities that they are required to perform.
  • Review the assessment and update when changes are required. Changes may be required following the identification of new or imported infection control risks into the healthcare service.

Isolation to prevent the spread of infection.

If an individual in your care is thought tot be infectious, they should be placed in a single room in isolation.

  • Source Isolation – Separating the infected person to prevent the further spread of infection to others.
  • Protection isolation – Separating the susceptible person to prevent them from acquiring an infection from others.
Scroll to Top
Skip to content